The Accidental Sunflower

Not planted, yet sown

by the birds’ careless, ravenous feasting,

buried by debris swept off the sidewalk,

a sunflower grew tight beside the white porch railing.

A seed sprouted and stretched tender leaves toward the sun,

turned its veiled face to the east,


unfurled golden flags of ray petals,


waved emerald leaves in the breeze,


welcomed the soaking rain,


opened its seedy heart wide

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and grinned a spiraled smile.


I joyfully watched the accidental sunflower grow and change from a castaway seed to a mature bloom.  I saw the bees’ pollen-laden visits, the spider’s trapeze web, and the grasshoppers’ hungry gnawing.


I saw the ray petals burn bright gold and then fade and wither as the seed hulls swelled fat and green.


I saw the color drain away, leaving silver and brown as the seeds ripened and the birds found the sunflower’s final gift.

From life to life.

I saw and witnessed the meaningfulness and beauty of the sunflower’s life, which existed despite its “accidental” beginning.

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Our Lord is the God who sees us . . . and cares for us, as He did for Hagar.  Hagar was a slave who fled Sarai’s abuse and ran into the desert, pregnant and alone.  Her life was not what she had planned, a life of disdain given and received, but

the Lord found Hagar near a spring in the desert; . . . he said, ‘Hagar, slave of Sarai, where have you come from, and where are you going?’  Genesis 16:7,8   NIV

The Lord knew who she was and addressed her by name.  He instructed Hagar to return to Sarai and told her about the future of her son.  Hagar, an unseen servant, caught up in unplanned circumstance, called God el Roi.

 She gave this name to the Lord who spoke to her: ‘You are the God who sees me,” for she said, “I have now seen the One who sees me.’  Genesis 16:13   NIV


Perhaps your life has not gone as you planned, like Hagar, and difficult circumstances tangle your feet like briars on a path.  God sees.  God cares.  He knows your future and has a purpose for you.

Great are your purposes and mighty are your deeds.   Jeremiah 32:19   NIV

Perhaps you have known, perhaps you have been the child whose parents did not love you as they should have, did not protect you, didn’t provide for your needs, body and soul.  Maybe you are hurting as much as the woman whose mother hurled the words  “unwanted” and “accident” at her.  God sees.  God cares.

Even if my father and mother abandon me,
the Lord will hold me close.   Psalm 27:10  NLT

Maybe you feel rejected by the one who said, “I do” and then didn’t.  God sees.  God cares.

Don’t be afraid. For you are very precious to God.
Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!

Daniel 10:19

Despite our bleak beginnings and pained past and fractured faith, God sees and has a purpose for us:  to love and be loved, to do what only you can do and be in the place that only you can be.

God knows where we have come from and where we are going.  He sees.  We can grow from an accidental and unplanned beginning to a beautiful, joyous, and meaningful life.

From life to Life.

But I have raised you up for this very purpose, that I might show you my power and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.   Exodus 9:16   NIV

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Photo of sprouting sunflower seed from the National Sunflower Association.

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Linking with

  Jennifer Dukes Lee    Laura Boggess    Holley Gerth

Essential Fridays Linkup   Essential Thing Devotions

Posted on October 3, 2014, in Devotional and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 14 Comments.

  1. Thank you for the lovely and affirming post.

    Blessings ~ Wendy ❀

  2. I always look forward to reading your beautiful posts! The photos, your words, and His Words are soothing to the soul! Blessings to you!

  3. Sunflowers are my favorite! Love you pictures and your words:)

  4. This is so beautiful, Constance Ann! The words and the pictures together. Thank you for this wonderful reminder of God’s purpose. ~Joyce

  5. Beautiful and affirming post, Constance. Thank you.

  6. christinelaennec

    Lovely, thank you!

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