Wednesday, 26 May 2021


It was the last school day before the two weeks holiday. I came to pick up my children and saw almost every child had something in his hands – a small plant. I also saw a plant laid on the ground. Somebody must have dropped it by accident and left it there.

My daughter came to me and proudly showed me her plant – which later I learnt that she didn’t really plant the seed. The seed planting was done by the bigger children, but she was allowed to bring a plant back home. Oh how happy she was!

From the corner of my eyes I saw my other child – he had the same plant in his hands, complete with his self-made pot. But contrary to his sister, he didn’t look pleased at all. I asked him what he had, he gladly handed the plant to me and fled away. Finally delighted that he didn’t have to hold that boring thing again.

I looked at the plant – it was dying. All dried and crumpled. I looked at the flower pot he had made, it was from a cartoon and paper. I believe the teacher had instructed the children to decorate it. But instead I found his handwriting: “Ik vind het niet leuk” – I don’t like this 🙈 I can imagine my son didn’t find it interesting to keep a plant alive.

As we left the schoolyard, the school director stopped me and asked if I wanted to bring another plant home. I looked and saw that she had picked up the plant I saw earlier on the ground. “Do you want to bring this home?” It’s hard to say no to a school director, so I received the plant and all of us headed home.

At home I added more soil for the adopted plant, and watered every one of the plants we brought from home. The adopted one and my son’s looked much hopeless. But I took care of them anyway.

Two weeks later, all plants looked healthy and began to show some buds. To our surprise, the adopted one (the one that fell on the ground) was the first to bloom! I didn’t even know which kind of plant they were and I was so delighted to see the beautiful red flower greeting me early in the morning

My son was also surprised to see his plant survived. His plant was the second to bloom. This made my daughter a little bit jealous, but I patiently explained to her that every plant has its own time to grow. Gratefully a few days later her plant began to bloom, a beautiful pink flower this time.

This reminds me of two things;

One: Everything has its time.

King Solomon said,

To everything there is a season,

A time for every purpose under heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die

A time to plant, and a time to pluck what is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal;

A time to break down, and a time to build up.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh;

A time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones.

A time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to gain, and a time to lose.

A time to keep and a time to throw away;

A time to tear, and a time to sew.

A time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate.

A time of war, and a time of peace.

Ecclesiastes 3: 1 – 8 (NKJV)

Two: there’s a glimpse of hope even in the dried and dying situation.

The plant my son brought home likely wouldn’t survive and yet this small life endured and even blossomed earlier than my daughter’s. 

The person, the thing we see as hopeless and broken might actually survive – by the grace of God, when we persevere in taking care of them.
We might see almost nothing good anymore in some particular areas in our lives. And yet, the littlest amount of hope is still called hope. Knowing that God has a plan and a time for every purpose in our lives, we can faithfully water our ‘little plants’ and while trusting our hope in His hands, we know that He knows and gives the best for us.

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