5 Heavenly Stories About the Joy of Flowers

These angelic messages, passed on through a bud sprouting through the snow or a windowsill plant thriving, will lift your spirits.

Posted in , Feb 25, 2022

Illustration by Kendra Binney

The Replanting by Kaylin Kaupish, Editor

My spider plant sat on the windowsill in my new apartment, its leaves wilted and yellow. It had been doing great in my old place, growing so big I had to change it to a bigger pot. After that, my once-healthy spider plant took a turn for the worse. I knew how it felt.

I was still unpacking boxes from my move, and everything felt unsettled. I had lived in my previous apartment for five years and missed its quiet coziness. But the rent increase had been a deal breaker. I didn’t like the layout of the new apartment, and the neighbors were noisy.

Will this place ever feel like a home? I wondered.

After making a good dent in my unpacking, I sat on the couch with my laptop. I searched for ways to bring my spider plant back to life. I found a good plant-care website and clicked on the tab for repotting. Apparently, it was very common for plants to wilt after being moved to a new pot. It was a tough transition, and they just needed to get used to their new environment. I guess it just takes time, I thought.

The weeks passed and I got more comfortable in my new space. I organized my stuff, decorated, and the neighbors thankfully quieted down. One morning I woke up, made a fresh pot of coffee, and wandered my new home, feeling surprisingly at peace. I went to the windowsill and found my spider plant looking healthier than ever. Its leaves were green and full of life. We’d both just needed a little time to flourish.

Dandelion Sign by Chris Silton from Aiken, South Carolina

”Dandelion blossoms, like freckles on a field of green.” It was a line I’d read in a magazine many years ago. To me, it meant that even when beauty is right in front of us, we can’t always see it. I struggled to see it myself sometimes when I looked in the mirror, having battled my weight for years. Finally I’d joined a weight-loss program at the invitation of a friend. The program worked wonders for me. I lost 50 pounds and had 53 more to go to reach my goal weight.

Recently, though, I’d come under a lot of stress. I’d let my good eating habits go. As I got ready for my next meeting, I hoped that I hadn’t gained back as much as I feared. Lord, no matter what happens, I prayed on the way over, may I still be able to see dandelion blossoms on a field of green.

I parked my old green Pontiac, ready to go in and face the truth. I went behind the privacy screen and stepped onto the scale. The balance moved, then settled. So much progress, wiped out just as I feared. “You need to buckle down and work the program,” said the meeting’s leader.

I felt like a total failure and bolted out to the parking lot. I was almost to the car when I stopped in my tracks. Dozens of yellow dandelion blossoms had been carefully arranged on the hood of my Pontiac. Dandelion freckles on a field of green, no matter what.

Loving Lilacs by Debra Mann from Grapevine, Texas

I stepped out onto the covered patio of my family’s home in Independence, Missouri. I was back in town during a cold and rainy April for another family funeral, after we’d buried my father only three months before. Dad and I had spent a lot of time sitting out on this patio talking, and our daily conversations continued over the phone when I moved away to Texas.

My favorite call of the year was always followed up with a picture: the June blooming of the lilac bush my brother and I had given Dad one Father’s Day. “It’s got the most incredible scent, Deb,” he’d say. “I wish you could smell it.”

I couldn’t bear the thought of not getting that phone call from Dad come June.

The rain was only making me feel more lonely for him, and I turned to go back inside. A distinct floral scent stopped me. The smell of roses with a hint of vanilla. I followed the scent around to the side of the house. I would never have thought to check, but Dad’s lilacs were already in full bloom. Angels had made Dad’s wish come true and brought me Father’s Day comfort in April.

A Dahlia in Winter by Kelly Lee-Creel from Seattle, Washington

My year started with a plan. I was finally going to garden. I’d done the research, bought all the supplies and cleared away a spot in my yard. In my journal, I recorded my gardening goals. By summer, I hoped to have a garden full of flowers to give away to friends. I was most excited to see the café au lait dahlias bloom with their pale-pink ruffled petals.

All spring I ran myself ragged. I carted around slug bait and buckets of water. But despite all my hard work, my poor plants were hardly surviving. I watched as my neighbors’ gardens erupted with flowers growing tall and sturdy. By summer’s end, all I’d managed to grow were a few sad and sickly plants. The café au lait dahlia never flowered. That fall, an early frost wiped out my plants for good. I stared at the dead stalks. I can’t believe I have nothing to show for all my hard work. It seemed like a sign that the hobby wasn’t for me. God, should I just give up on gardening?

In November, we got our first snowfall of the year. It wasn’t much, but it coated the yard in a soft powder. It covered up my would-be garden as well. Except... I looked out the window and spotted a subtle dash of color within the white blanket. Was it possible? I grabbed my coat and ran outside. There, on the café au lait dahlia plant, was a beautiful pale flower bloom.

I would try gardening again next year, in a sunnier spot. God’s dahlia told me anything was possible.

Mom’s Yellow Sunflower by Luanna Cheney from Northfield, Minnesota

The phone rang. I picked it up to hear my brother on the other end. “It’s Mom,” he said. “She died, Luanna.” Mom had given her all in a long, brave fight with cancer, but knowing she was finally at peace didn’t bring the comfort I’d hoped for. Grief overwhelmed me.

I went out for a walk, despite the cloudy day. The sky was such a contrast to my mom’s cheerful personality. I didn’t know of anyone else whose favorite color was bright yellow. She loved summer and sunshine and flowers. Yellow sunflowers in particular. I headed for a familiar house a few blocks away, one with a big, beautiful garden in the front yard. I passed by it often because it always reminded me of Mom. The garden was just what I needed on a gloomy day like this.

I arrived to find the house under construction, the garden demolished. My heart sank. There’s nothing for me here today, I thought. As if in answer, the clouds broke. A beam of sunlight landed like a spotlight on the one flower that was still intact—a big, bright sunflower, its yellow petals gleaming. “Luanna, don’t mourn for me,” I heard clearly. “I am happy here.” Mom had found a way to cheer me even now.

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