This purple orchid came home with me two years ago. Her bold beauty caught my eye at the hardware store one afternoon while my husband was off down the plumbing aisle buying some sort of gasket to fix some sort of leak. I held her in my lap on the drive home, protecting her two fragile blossoms.
The bathroom counter by the window seemed the best place for this stunning demonstration of God’s artistic cleverness. She liked it there and within two weeks a third bud joined the first two. For several months her purpleness made me smile whenever I caught a double reflection of her in the bathroom mirror. Those three orchid blooms were tenacious and always lovely.
Then one by one they went limp and fell off. All that remained was a dry, unattractive stem and several emerald leaves that felt rubbery. I don’t have much experience with orchids so I looked up about how often to feed them and what kind of conditions they like. I followed the instructions and waited.
Waiting is boring. It’s discouraging and worst of all it gives place to schemes. When we see nothing happening we want to make something happen. That’s what Sarah did when she told Abraham to take Hagar and have a baby with her. She had reached the point where the possibility of new life being created inside of her seemed ridiculous. Impossible. Laughable.
And yet Sarah did become pregnant. She did have a son just as God had promised. And she named him Isaac, which means “laughter”.
As I watched my orchid do nothing for months and months I wanted to move it to a different location or feed it more fertilizer. I wanted to do something to make it bust out three more purple flowers. I wanted to see the beauty again and not just the unattractive stick of a stem with the gangly roots sticking out like the flailing arms of a cartoon space creature.
But I had no power to make it do what I wanted it to do. All I could do was wait.
Then one day a bud appeared. And another. And another. Hints of purple began to show and more buds kept forming. The orchid exploded with not three flowers as it had before. This time it sprouted six flowers. Six! Double the bounty. Double the beauty. Double the joy it gives me whenever I see it.
This morning I was gazing at the full bloom orchid as I was having my quiet time on the lanai. The word “wait” seemed to whisper over me. Wait. Wait.
I am waiting for several things in my life to bust out and start blooming. I have been waiting for quite some time for one particular dream to show signs of purpleness but it continues to appear about as dead and dull as a dormant orchid stem.
How about you? Can you relate? Are you waiting?
Boring, isn’t it? Discouraging. Your mind keeps coming up with crazy schemes. Your dream seems laughable. That’s okay. You and I are in good company with Sarah and with the orchid from the hardware store. We are held by the One who put these dreams in our hearts. All we can do is wait. He infuses that which appears hopeless with life-giving, resurrection power. He brings the beauty in His time.
And He does it abundantly! Not three orchid blooms this year . . . Six!
Wait. Believe. Trust. Hope. Wait.