Aloha Friday Message – October 10, 2008 – Orchids anyone?

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A beautiful orchis in a beautiful place

This orchid was photographed at Hanalei Orchids in Kapa`a. My friend took me for a tour of the growing area on Father’s Day so I could see how these amazing plants grow from seedling to the mature and beautiful flowers like this one. I can’t pretend to know all the names of these, or even the different types. I just know for certain they are amazing, beautiful, each unique, and that getting one from seed to bloom is a really long process that takes lots of time and attention.

The seeds have to be carefully collected, and – for this commercial process – are sent to a laboratory for germination in a special medium that give them the kinds of environment they need to sprout successfully. The owners of Hanalei Orchids have successfully created dozens (at least) of new varieties, and that in itself is a carefully crafted process. Then there is the watering and feeding, the careful culling of the plants that are not doing well, the long process of bringing the plants to the point where they put out their flower stalks and finally bloom. Some orchid blooms last for weeks on end, and bring delight for many days. Then they go back to getting ready to do it again. Eventually, they do wear out, wither, and die. Along the way they have produced daughter-plants and seed pods that make it possible to carry on the species.
While I contemplate the orchids I keep – I don’t really grow them like our friends at Hanalei Orchids – I am reminded of something that has been around for a long time: “That which is beautiful and rare is often difficult, but never impossible.” So in that way, orchids are like friendships. They often take a lot of work to bring from seed to blossom, each one is unique, new growth comes from making new connections, and you have to understand what it takes to permit growth long enough to produce the fruit – the seed pod. Sometimes friendships are “propagated” by splitting off a part of the relationship so that it eventually stands on its own (a bit of a stretch but stay with me here). Friendships that last have blossoms that last for a long time, and when those blossoms fade there is always the expectation that more will come. And, though we don’t like to think about it, I guess it could also be said that it is inevitable that the living part of a friendship, the persons in it, eventually wither and die. Yet the flower, the fruit, the memory, the hope for more beauty lives on.

John 15:15 I no longer call you slaves, because a slave does not know what his master is doing. I have called you friends, because I have told you everything I have heard from my Father. 16 It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name he may give you. 17 This I command you: love one another.” Friends share whatever it takes to grow the friendship. I am so very grateful you have chosen to share your life with me.

Whatever, whenever, wherever, whoever, however, if ever, forever — at your service, Beloved.

chick

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About Chick Todd

American Roman Catholic reared as a "Baptiterian" in Denver Colorado.

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