Summary: Bougainvilleas are the stars of a drought year! The drier it is, the more profusely and brilliantly they bloom, and in colors ranging from white through pink, yellow, orange and mauve to magenta.
James 1:2 “My brethren count it all joy when you fall into various trials…”
We need spiritual maturity to really understand this scripture! Not many of us like problems, we would like to have a year full of joy and peace and only then we would praise God. But how about some series of problems and trials that attack you one after the other, it is now that we need to get “divine strength” from God to walk through this valley and come out refined like gold.
Right now in Hyderabad we are in the peak of summer, in the midst of the scorching heat, how could these lovely Bougainvilleas flourish so gorgeously, I wondered, as we drove past a thick shrub of these lovely flowers in exotic colors! Bougainvilleas are the stars of a drought year! The drier it is, the more profusely and brilliantly they bloom, and in colors ranging from white through pink, yellow, orange and mauve to magenta.
As I meditated on the ‘bougainvilleas’, my writer-mind wandered to connect it with spiritual matters. How wonderful would it be if we could bloom like these lovely bougainvilleas despite draught in our life? Any answer?
Years back, just after resigning my job to work full-time for the Lord, when we had to travel for a meeting, I managed to hop up and get on the upper berth of the train and sit down and reserve seats for the two girls: my daughter and maid. We had to sit like that and travel for four hours. After settling in our seat and when the train began to move, I wondered, “how did I do this?” The lady next to me had a big sack next to her and kept nudging and disturbing me. I could hear satan whisper, “look what you have got for giving up your multinational bank job and work for the Lord, serves you right”. I slowly started praying and praising the Lord, I felt peace enter my heart. Miraculously sitting on the upper berth, God gave me an opportunity to share the gospel with a young girl. God helped us at every step.
Those who have learnt the art of yielding to the will of God in suffering will get to know God more and more through each suffering; their hearts will become better and better through each trial. Trials will thereafter be adventurous and exciting. Such people will count it all joy when they go through diverse temptations, for every suffering will be full of meaning and purpose as they travel the road to perfection. Have you watched people who have seen problems and who have learnt to trust God, they are different, they are undisturbed and unruffled, they handle problems with God given dignity. Amen.
I got to read the book ‘Nearing Home’ authored by Rev Billy Graham which proved to be a ‘comforting hand’ when sickness, operation and weakness suddenly blasted the peace in my life. I kept meditating the substance written by Mr. Graham in his book which gave me enormous strength. He had said, ‘the mere act of getting up from a chair has become an ordeal now ’; these words from a man who had rocked 280 nations for God was very moving; yet, in the midst of the pain, he had dictated the lovely book at the age of 92 to reach out and touch many people going through pain. Such people are the Bougainvilleas!