Did you know that the iris is Nona’s favorite kind of flower. Besides being a very pretty flower, it has sentimental significance to her – it was her mother’s favorite flower. So you would not be surprised to see a bunch of iris growing in our yard right now as it is peak season for irises.
Admittedly I am not much of a flower guy. But irises are indeed right perty. And I found out a few things about them that help me to appreciate them as well as to make an object lesson out of them.
For instance, I did not know that in Greek mythology Iris is the name of the Goddess of the Rainbow. And because the rainbow is a reminder of God’s covenant promise with His people (Genesis 9:15-17) every time that you see an iris in bloom be reminded that our God is a promise keeper…
For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. (2 Corinthians 1:20)
The goddess Iris also escorted the deceased from earth to heaven, guiding them to their final destination. This association of irises and the afterlife became so entrenched in Greek culture that individuals would plant irises on the graves of loved ones. Now we know that this is myth, but irises can be a great reminder of the Lord’s promise that “to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord.”
I also did not know that there are hundreds of varieties of iris. Lots and lots of different species and lots of different colors. Just to impress you with my word-smithing, they are what we might call sui generis. That is to say that they are unique. Speaking of the Red Hawk Bearded Iris, one reference said…
Large as well as prominently placed at the top of their erect and self-supporting stems, they are, conveniently, likely to be higher than the early-season growth of most perennials nearby. Iris show up well from a distance, then, so you don’t need more than an occasional clump to bring splashes of sui generis floral excitement to mixed plantings.
The connection for you is this: you also have been created to be very unique. There is no one else like you and you have been especially created to “bring splashes of sui generis” splendor to the world around you as you display the Lord’s wondrous imagination.
So the next time you see an iris take a minute and and notice it’s beauty. Take a minute and experience it’s scent. Take a minute and give thanks to God for being a promise keeper. Take a minute and thank God for creating you just the way that you are to demonstrate His glorious purposes. And then give Nona a phone call and tell her that you love her and are thinking about her.
Never forget that you are very loved!