Royal Wee Violets

Some violets spared from the mowing. Royal wee witnesses of God's favor. Photo by John

Some violets spared from the mowing. Royal wee witnesses of God’s favor. Photo by John

Keeping the yard of our farm house mowed is a constant occupation these days. Spring is bursting out with the quite heavy rains, punctuated with bits of intense sunshine.

When I mow I cannot bear to wipe out all of the violets who are raising their glorious heads high.

I must let several of the carpets of these diminutive flowers live to cast their beauty on yet another day. And as I do, I remember my dear mother and father. He would complain that the violets had a tendency to take over big swaths of our little Louisville lawn. But mother would snap back, “Those are my little violets, and I love them. So leave them alone.”

Through the ages purple has been the color of royalty, perhaps because it was so laborious to make out of tiny sea creatures, and, therefore, so expensive.

So-called “common” people could be fined for presuming to wear purple, and thereby try to rise above where their birth had fixed them.

So, I redirect the hungry blades of my  John Deere LX-78 around them, and I think of divine, defiant glory. I think of my mother and of Mother Mary’s words in Luke 1.52. I think of the meek who shall inherit the earth, and of the Savior who holds them so dear.

In my present foreboding, shared the globe over, I look up from the violets and hear a voice saying, “Leave them alone. I love them.”

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About John

John is a retired pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who has served congregations for over 40 years, including in rural, suburban, campus ministry and urban settings. His love of Border Collie sheepdogs has been fortified by his many friendships with shepherds all around the world. Nothing he has ever or will ever accomplish is as significant as the patience God, his wife and his friends have shown in putting up with his deficiencies.
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