And July brings lilies!
The first few varieties are just beginning their show-stopping display, tentatively opening buds which have had a lot of nasty stuff thrown their way lately.
Between the worms, wind, hail, and more wind, lilies have had to fight for every bud and leaf this year.
And every year without fail, I am awestruck by what they can accomplish!
I could be doing the rounds, recording the number of stalks which are topless, having had their precious buds knocked off by that ferocious hail this week. I could be adding up the number of welts and bruises that are just now showing up, remnants and reminders of the war-zone the garden has been through.
I could have a bit of a pity party as the casualties mount...
But then I would miss out on the brave souls which have escaped with their potential intact - and that would be a real shame. Because more have come through the wacky weather than not - and that is something to celebrate! So I force my gardener's heart to see the good, to count the blessings, to add up the positives.
I tend to forget that life, even in the midst of the tough stuff, has a lot to offer. A lot to celebrate!
When life gets tough, it's hard not to count the losses. Add up the negatives, and multiply them by the amount of pain caused by the down-sides of living in a fallen world. Keep a running tab of all the hurts thrown our way like ungodly hailstones.
It takes a lot of discipline to learn to see the good in the middle of bad, doesn't it?
Maybe that's why the Apostle Paul urges us to check our thinking...
"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things."
I'm pretty sure Paul isn't advocating denial - that is just a variation of living a lie, and lying doesn't fly very well in the face of Truth. No, I think he is urging us to learn to celebrate the good - to see the positives, to cling to our blessings, to count up a list of the never-ending beautiful gifts our God gives us freely, every day. To celebrate the blooms that escaped the damage, rather than adding up the losses.
Losses will come. You and I both know that. But even in the losses, there are beautiful gifts that can be counted as noble, lovely, pure, admirable.
Imagine - if we could train ourselves to see them with eyes that are ready to see the good hiding in the ordinary, in the wonderful, and even in the horrible, we will have something of great value to add to our world.
And that, my friend, is worth celebrating!