Sunday, July 24, 2016

Sunflowers and Sonpeople

Joy in a sunflower field about a mile east of Severn, NC

Sadie and I were on an early morning walk down a dirt farm road yesterday.  In one of the fields a farmer is growing sunflowers. Although I had passed the sunflower field other mornings, yesterday the beauty of it stuck me in a new way.  Perhaps it was due to the flowers being at their fullest and brightest stage.  Or perhaps it was the way that as the sun rose over the eastern horizon its rays illuminated the whole field of sunflowers, which were all facing directly east.

I always pray before Sadie and I leave for our walk and I ask the Lord to walk and talk with me as I walk and talk with Sadie (yes, I talk with our dog, or at least I talk to her). Yesterday morning the Lord answered my prayer as I looked at the sunflower field and afterwards as I thought about it on the way home. The insights He gave are the inspiration for this blog. This morning I invited my photographer daughter, Joy, to walk with me to capture the sight. Although it involved getting up at 5am, she agreed.

They are Called Sunflowers for a Reason

I have no idea why a butterfly is called a butterfly, but it’s obvious why a sunflower is called a sunflower.  It looks like the sun.

This led me to think about how we are supposed to look like Jesus.  I don’t mean that we should all have beards (that would be awful). I mean that our lives should imitate the life of Christ so that when people see us they see Christ in us. We should be “Sonpeople”.

This was God’s plan from the very beginning:

Although humanity fell into sin and darkness, God never abandoned His plan to make a world full of people who are as loving, pure, kind, gentle, courageous, and giving as Jesus.  We see this theme over and over:

Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. (Ephesians 5:1-2)

For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you. (John 13:15)

Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ. (1 Corinthians 11:1, ESV)

For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. (1 Peter 2:21, ESV)

How can we become more like Jesus so that we look more like Him?  How can grow into “Sonpeople”?  The same way sunflowers grow.

How Sunflowers and Sonpeople Grow

Most of you may have already known this, but for me it was a new discovery.  The sunflowers were all facing the same direction.  More to the point, they were all facing the sun!  You can see this in the two photos below, one taken looking west and the other looking east.

Facing the sun helps sunflowers to grow.  And gazing on the Son causes us to become more and more like Jesus:

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18, ESV)

Wow!  But, practically speaking what does that mean?

It means that as we hear and believe the Good News, and as we read and think about God’s Word, and as we sing praise songs about Jesus, and as we serve Him wherever we go, the Holy Spirit is doing something amazing in our lives.  He is making us become more and more like Jesus.

As we face the Son, we are becoming “Sonpeople”.

Hebrews 13:16 And do not forget to do good and to share with others . . .

1 comment:

  1. A beautiful illustration , using my very most favorite Flower. Thank you for your insightful blogs. Love the pretty model in the middle of the field of Sunflowers <><