Thorns among the Barbs

Thoughts on my journey to heaven

Thorns or roses – which is best?

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Funny thing that until very recently I would have always said that the flower that appears on a rose bush is the best part of the plant… vibrant color, delicate petal structure, sweet fragrance.  Most people would agree with that statement, in fact florists world wide have made small fortunes on that very idea.

According to yahoo answers

Why do roses have thorns? Roses orignally grew in area which had large numbers of herbivores, plant eating animals such as cows and rabbits. Rose foliage and flowers are sweet tasting (rose petals can be eaten and a tea can be made out of certain parts of the flower).  Many animals seek out sweet tasting plants, so the rose was and instant target. The roses with thorns were less likely to be eaten and therefore survived and reproduced.  If the roses didn’t have thorns they probably would have been eaten and then there would be no roses for us and THAT wouldnt be fair. The sweetest smelling roses have the worst thorns…its to protect them!”

So the bottom line of thorns is that they are protection for the plant which allows it to continue to grow, and allows the opportunity for the beauty of the plant, its flower, to emerge. 

Spiritual lesson?  Yes, I think so.  Actualy I can see several lessons in looking at a rose:

1.  The beauty of what we will become is often hidden by the harsh and uglyness of the troubles life will hold for us now because of sin.   We do not always see that beauty because we see only the thorns.  So the question I am asking myself is this – What thorns are keeping others from seeing the true beauty God has placed in me?  How can I reduce the possibility of the thorns being visible?

2. The rose comes after a long time of development, growth, struggle.  That rose starts out as a bud, deep within the plant, and slowly the stem grows, and the bud appears in time.  But leading up to the actual flower is a long time of growth, taking in nourishment, strengthening the plant.  We will have times when we will be tested, struggle to find truth, struggle to work out our salvation.  And in the end, after the battle has ceased we will have a sweet reward. 

“Trials are only to test your faith, to see whether or not it is strong and pure.  Your faith is being tested as fire test gold and purifies it. Your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold; so if your faith remains strong after being tried in the test tube of fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day of his return.”  1 Peter 1:7

So the question for this lesson is “how goes the struggle?”  Am I taking in God’s word daily?  Am I submitting my will to his daily?  Am I allowing his spirit to mold me, conform me to the image of Jesus Christ?  Am I willing to see the joy in the journey, or is my gaze focused on the destination?

Lord, Thank you that you have created all things.  Thank you that you have given us the challenge to grow, and to struggle toward the day when you will throw off this mantel of sin scars for one that is sin free, and filled with joy.  While I yearn for the day when I will see you face to face I must keep my focus on your mighty hand and your gracious mercy.  Until my last breath I ask you to give me joy in the journey, for the destination of heaven is on the horizon and the course is charted.  Thank you for the thorns, and thank you for the beauty of what you are creating in us.  Amen

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Written by Barbara Bloom

August 21, 2008 at 1:02 AM

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