Blog Post by
Rev. Bob Jensen
Bridge Presbytery Leader

In a Garden, Some People See the Flowers.

My dad loved the beauty of flowers.  In his retirement, he spent his time mainly caring for flowers he found “dumpster-diving” out behind the local grocery store.  He would bring home those cast-off flowers and nurse them to health.  And though he was never much for words, I know how thrilled he was when one of those once-dead flowers burst forth in full bloom.  And for a time, his house and yard were a full garden of flowers in bloom.  He had so many flowers inside and outside that it would take one full day a week just to water them all.  Some people, like my dad, see the flowers in a garden.

One day, the local newspaper did a long feature about dad and his garden, including photos.  It was a real treat for him, and he was so proud!  And one day while he was telling me about it, he chuckled and said that after the paper came out, a neighbor from the next block was walking by and stopped to look.  And after walking all through the house and basement and all through dad’s greenhouse and the yard, the fellow just shook his head and harrumphed, “Who’s gonna do the weeding of all of this?”

Don’t you know people like that?  Some people see the flowers.  Some only see weeds.

Some enjoy the beauty to be found in God’s world.  They gaze at sunsets and marvel at the ocean.  Some see grace and joy and love and endless possibilities for good everywhere in the living of their days.  Some appreciate their many blessings and look for ways they can be a blessing to the world.

Some people see the flowers in a garden.

Others only see weeds.

They look at the same garden and see it through eyes of suspicion, division, labels, and blame.  They look at it with greedy eyes or through eyes that can only see the status quo, never the possibilities.  And all too often they see it through eyes blinded by privilege and power.

I think of dad and his flowers every year as Easter approaches.  He has been gone now since 2011.  And his flowers have been gone even longer, as advancing age led him to give up his beloved hobby a decade before he died.  But come Holy Week every year, I remember dad – and especially his flowers.

The life of Jesus was such a beautiful flower that some people saw in him the very being of God.  They saw in him the possibility of life in abundance for all people, not just some.  They saw in him the hope of real justice, the coming of God’s reign of peace and joy for all people.  Some saw in Jesus the wondrous beauty of the perfect flower.

But others saw in him only another weed to be pulled, eradicated, destroyed.

Yet even when that flower was yanked out of the ground and thrown into the dumpster – dead – God still saw in Jesus the beauty of that perfect flower and raised him to new life.

And his beautiful vision for a new world to come still lives in hearts and minds and hands that see the flowers.

Maybe our job is to tend the garden, to till the soil of justice and peace, to water the garden of this world with hope so that God’s beautiful flower will shine all the brighter?

May your Holy Week and Easter be blessed with joy as you see for yourself the radiant colors of God’s beautiful flower and the possibilities for the new life that he brings.

Rev. Bob Jensen
Bridge Presbytery Leader



  • Posted March 30, 2021 8:00 pm
    Craig Howard


    Beautiful story with image and fragrance! “Every bush is aflame with the glory of God!”

  • Posted March 30, 2021 8:43 pm
    Julie Ann Gvillo

    Such a lovely meditation, Bob, and a beautiful tribute to your dad. Thank you for sharing it. <3

  • Posted April 2, 2021 4:35 pm
    William McNichols

    real nice

    thank you

    i had to read it again today after i read it yesterday

  • Posted April 2, 2021 5:22 pm
    Paul and Mary Lee

    Thank you for sharing the wonderful story about your dad and his beautiful flowers. It is good to be reminded to see the flowers and not the weeds in life.

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