After All

There are some gorgeous daylilies blooming in my yard right now.

lily 2

Their colors are so unique and vibrant. They actually bring a smile to face when I look at them, because I am reminded of how they got in my flowerbed in the first place… and that I almost threw them away.

Yes, I foolishly thought to throw these treasures away at one time. About five years ago, my great aunt had actually dug up some daylilies from her yard and put them in a box for anyone who wanted some. My mother saw them and thought that they’d be pretty in my new flowerbed, so she got some and put them in two plastic Walmart sacks for me.

Now I do not have a green thumb. I worked at a flower nursery the summer between high school and college and proved that my thumbs are very un-green. One time when I was supposed to be pulling weeds and grass blades out of a potted plant, I did a great job of pulling all of the green stuff out from the edges of the pot. I left one tall green plant standing alone in the soil and proudly showed my employer…who informed me the only green plant left in the pot was a huge weed. Somehow, I’d pulled all the good stuff out and left the great big bad stuff in!

But my mother was sure that I wouldn’t be able to  harm these daylilies. She gave me the two plastic bags of “dug-up” flowers and I sat them by my front steps, bag and all, as I was going in the front door. I had every intention of planting them quickly…but then I ended up going to the hospital and having my second little baby boy, and all thoughts of plants were forgotten. I became immersed in bottles, diapers, and sleep deprivation. I had no time for horticulture! Chris was busy with work, helping around the house, and entertaining a busy two-year-old, so he gave no thought to the lilies waiting for transplant. Even my mother, the master gardener, who came to see the boys and help out several times a week, walked by the Walmart sacks by the front steps. The daylilies were forgotten.

They sat in those plastic bags for three weeks. One day, I left baby Peyton inside with his daddy and took Parker outside for some time together. As Parker toddled around the lawn, I looked over and noticed the plastic bags.

“Oooohhh, I forgot about those”, I groaned.

I took them over to the garbage cans immediately. Chris jokes that one of my favorite things to do is to throw things away. There is some truth to that. I don’t like to let things “sit” if there’s no purpose for them. I figured that these daylilies had no purpose, no life left. But as I raised the bags to throw them away, I looked a little more closely into the bag and noticed some green among the shoots.

Seriously? These things are super-flowers! If they still had some life in them after three weeks of sitting in a plastic bag, maybe they could survive my black thumbs!

So I decided to plant them. Chris got rid of the brown parts and what was left was a pretty measly lot. We planted them in two different places in our yard. There was no miraculous blooming and splendor of daylilies that first year, or even the next. However, I did notice one thing: growth. One green shoot turned into five the first year, which multiplied into about ten fat, green blades the next year. By the third season, after being watered and cultivated, after sinking their roots deeply into the ground, the daylilies bloomed. They were so pretty! And now, after five years of growth, they are breathtaking. And they were grown in my flowerbeds of all places!

lily one

These daylilies remind me of some other seeds in my life that I almost forgot about. That I left out in the elements until there was no sign of life. That I almost threw away.

When I was born, God gave me some special gifts, special seeds, that were meant to flourish. He planted words and songs inside of me, but it was left up to me to get the words out the way He planned them to be. My parents did a great job of cultivating these seeds, but when I became an adult and had to take care of the seeds without their help, I sat them outside the door of my heart and left them there. I let the many duties of life take precedence over the gifts at my door. I was busy with more important things than writing and making music. Every once in awhile, I glanced out the door at the seeds, but then shook my head as fears and insecurities told me that those things were not important. Eventually, I almost forgot about the seeds…And I almost threw them away.

I remember coming to a point where I was “holding up the bag” over the garbage can, ready to let it fall away…but the Lord gently nudged me to look closely before abandoning the seeds He had given especially to me. And as I looked, I saw a tiny flicker, a tiny spark of life. These seeds were not meant to be thrown away. They were meant to flourish.

So I made a very important decision. I decided to replant these seeds and let them take root deep inside my heart. There was not an overnight miracle, although little “shoots” did start coming up immediately. He gave me little phrases to write down, simple melodies to play. The Lord is the Cultivator, and He has guided me to water the seeds with prayer and the Word…and the seeds are growing. Boy, are they growing! Some have bloomed into full-blown songs and stories that make my heart so happy! Those almost-forsaken seeds are going to flourish after all.

So I urge you, friends! Don’t throw your seeds away! He has given all of you something special. Are you supposed to teach? Are you meant to encourage? Do you have the seed of preaching, designing, planning, leading, or singing? Is the gift of giving comfort, of creating art, of cooking lying dormant in your soul? It’s not too late to grow your seeds! Don’t throw them away! Ask Him to cultivate the gifts He has placed within you. Use His Word and His presence and watch your gifts grow and bloom!

I was digging around (no gardening pun intended) in some past files and found this old treasure of a song there. This song is called After All. I wrote and recorded it over  ten years ago but it seems so relevant to what is going on in my heart today. One day, after all is said and done, I want to hold up a beautiful bouquet of the gifts that my Father gave to me. I want to hear Him say “Well done!” when He sees my flowers. I’ve included the lyrics to this one, friends. Read along and take a listen!

After All

After all is said and done and I’m left with all that I have won

Will there be anything in me that’s good?

Oh have I used the gifts You gave like I should?

Oh will You say “Well done, my faithful one” after all?

 

After all the music has been played and the crowd has all gone away

And the curtain closes over me Oh my God, tell me what will You see?

Will there be anything in me that’s pure?

Oh has it been Your glory I’ve lived for?

Oh will You say “Well done, my faithful one” after all?

 

And I’ve gained many riches on this earth

But what of all that I’ve acquired is of worth?

 

After all my life has been spent and my time on this earth has reached an end

Then I’ll look on Your sweet and holy face

Oh, will You say the words I long to hear You say?

Oh will You say “Well done, my faithful one” after all?

 

Words and music by Paige Muncher, 2003

 

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9 Responses to After All

  1. Jean Mayfield says:

    Beautiful! I am enjoying your posts so much! So gifted!

  2. keith says:

    Even though you recorded this song 10 years ago, which is hard to believe, it’s message is pertinent as if you had written it today. Because everyday someone reaches their ‘after all’ moment and faces judgment. Love the blog. So when is the book coming out? Dont dismiss those seeds.

  3. atimetoshare says:

    This is a beautiful analogy. Thanks for an inspirational post!

  4. This is beautiful, Paige.

  5. Pingback: He Keeps Me Singing…Even Through Cancer: Linda’s Story | My Story, My Song

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