Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Tender mercies felt in a Sunflower field....

"I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour, if we will only tune in." 

 ~George Washington Carver

Driving north on Highway 281 from the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, you will pass the most beautiful sunflower field.  It literally goes on for miles.  The sunflowers are in full bloom, a stunning sight to see.  I've always wanted to stop and take pictures--but never taken the time.  This past weekend, I finally did.  I was in a hurry, so I was just going to quickly jump out and take a few pictures--but I ended up experiencing something very different.

I couldn't stop smiling as I peered at the endless field of sunflowers through the viewfinder of my camera lens.  They were all so beautiful.  And almost immediately while walking among these beautiful creations, a calm feeling washed over me.  I took in a deep breath and slowly let it out and with that, all the worry and stress I have been carrying the past few weeks vanished.  At that moment, I felt as if I was the only person in the world -- it was so peaceful and quiet standing in that sunflower field. Time literally seemed to stand still.  The worries about our second adoption and its many setbacks... my grandmother's declining health...the stress of my husband's busy law career combined with his church calling as a Bishop and the toll it's taking on his health... the decision of whether we should move our family to the country life in Wimberley or stay in the city in South Texas... my 6-month follow-up CTscan I'm having next week to check the scattered nodules on my lungs....and the ever nagging question of whether I am doing enough to be the best wife and mother I can be.....  worries...worries and more worries that seem to be getting the best of me here lately and interfering with my happiness.

But as I stood there in that hot, sunny, sunflower field I felt God could hear each of these concerns that were weighing so heavily on my heart and mind that day--and it was if he whispered to my soul that everything would be okay.  I realized at that moment that I have been solely relying on myself for all the solutions....I was forgetting to turn to my Father in Heaven and the Savior for strength, guidance and refuge from the storms of life.  And that ultimately, Heavenly Father is at the helm of my life--He's directing it and in charge---not me.  I felt He needed me to understand this and that for him to help me.  I need to exercise greater faith and trust in Him so He can work certain miracles in my life.  This brief time in a sunflower field and the corresponding feelings were a "tender mercy", indeed.

How thankful I am for these beautiful creations of spring.  I'm glad that I took the time to "tune in" on this particular day.... to walk among these gorgeous sunflowers and experience natural, raw beauty.  

There is no question that I felt God's presence while standing in that massive sunflower field on this sunny, beautiful Friday afternoon in May.  Though I did not see Him, I felt His awe-inspiring power through the quiet beauty of His surrounding creations.  I not only felt His presence, but I felt His love for this earth on a deeper level as I stared through my camera lens while these beautiful, vibrant flowers danced in the wind. 

I was humbled to observe how each sunflower obediently stood ever tall and steadfast--all facing the sun.  For me, there was great symbolism in that observation.  Something I know I need to work on---having greater faith in God's plan for me and relying more on the Savior in my times of need--facing the Son.  These were tender mercies indeed.  But more importantly, I felt a deep confirmation in my heart of God's love and concern for me and my family, something I had been needing to feel.  It's nice to be reminded every once in a while---especially in this fast paced, crazy world of ours--- that we are not alone...that our Heavenly Father and Savior are keenly aware of our needs and desires.  And more importantly, that we are never alone.  Not ever.  It was truly a humbling experience.

“No matter how dark your days may seem, no matter how insignificant you may feel, no matter how overshadowed you think you may be, your Heavenly Father has not forgotten you. In fact, He loves you, with an infinite love.” 

 ~Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "Forget Me Not", Ensign, Nov. 2011



  1. such a beautiful post, jen. my heart and prayers are with you. i got goosebumps on the part where you said "i felt God." you reminded me that in soo many moments of the day, if i took time to stand still, i could feel him too. you are a gift to the world my friend. love ya.

    1. Thanks so much, my friend....I hope you and your beautiful family are doing well. Your babies are growing up way too fast !!

      Much love,

  2. gorgeous shots! I love sunflowers, they always look so happy.

    1. Thanks, was a lot of snapping these pics. :-)


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