Flowers, Leaves and Limes

April 29, 2013 | My Jottings

Good Monday morning! I am on day five of an antibiotic and feeling better. As I said before, I try very hard not to take antibiotics because I don’t want to alter my gut flora if I don’t have to. Do you try to preserve your gut flora too? I know my friend Carey is very diligent about hers. πŸ™‚ I’ve been drinking Kefir every day to to try ensure that some good bacteria will still stay on in my body while the antibiotic is using its big guns on the bad stuff. I’m so thankful to be up and around and not feeling like life is literally ebbing out of my body. Michael caught the bug and got well. Sara caught the bug and got well. I was not getting better, which clearly does not bode well for the state of my immune system, but this was not a huge surprise to me. I was diagnosed with Sarcoidosis over a decade ago and that is an immune system disease. I got sick with Sarc right after I was pressured to have a Hepatitis vaccination (another thing I’m wary about) because of our line of work. Years later I read that Sarcoidosis was increasing in medical personnel who had been vaccinated against Hepatitis. But….this is not going to be one of those old lady posts where I outline all the things wrong with my health.

Being a bit behind after 3 weeks of sinus infection and a titch of pneumonia, I have at least 3-5 things to attend to every day of this week except Friday. A crazy week ahead that I wish I could pare down, but all the appointments are mandatory. I just felt like getting on the blog here and saying hello and posting a photo of an arrangement my daughter Sara created recently.

It’s a fabulous table-top arrangement made of flowers, leaves and limes. And a succulent or two, and some dry stuff. She’s not here right this minute or I would have her give me the proper names for all these elements below — I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t say “flowers, leaves, limes and some dry stuff.”


Anyway, I thought of how life is like this. Don’t we all have some gorgeous figurative florals in our lives, those things that take our breath away and make us so happy we’re able to see and appreciate the glimpses of beauty we’re given? Like friends? Grandchildren? Stunning sunrises? The love and mercy of God?

And don’t we all have some figurative leaves in our lives? Just plain green things that are all around us and often go unnoticed because they’re just always there in abundance? Like air to breathe? Like ordinary duties to tend to day in and day out? Like messes that have to be cleaned and food that has to be prepared?

And how about limes? Do you have some limes in your life? I don’t mean literal limes, I’m talking about those things in our lives that are nourishing but are a little hard to swallow. Things like hardship that has been allowed because it will make us more loving and patient if we bear it while staying close to the Lord. Irregular people can be limes in our lives. I hope I’m not somebody’s lime, but I think I might be! Being in God’s waiting room while praying in hope and expectancy can be a lime-like thing. It’s good for you, but not your first choice.

I think we can take the beautiful blooms and the ordinary leaves and the sour limes we’ve been given, and let God make a beautiful arrangement from them. Sometimes he’ll use some succulents too, as in the photo above — things that grow even though the rain is scarce. And what if He throws in some dry stuff? Can’t dry stuff that isn’t very pretty or useful on its own add to the beauty? I think it can! I have plenty of dry stuff in my life that I’m hoping He uses for His glory.

I can think of one thing that should not be used in a unique arrangement like the one above. Anything moldy. That would have to be thrown out right away, so it doesn’t ruin the rest of the stuff. So while the Lord might use flowers and leaves and limes, I’m pretty sure He wants moldy or rotting things thrown out immediately. Lies, complaining, bitterness, cruelty, unfaithfulness…those sorts of things that never add to the beauty.

Anyway, this weekend Su and I will be having our MRIs to prepare for our June 10th knee replacement surgeries. Then we have to attend an exercise class to help us prepare for good recoveries by strengthening our muscles now. I think that would be a lime — a little hard to take, but very nourishing. πŸ™‚

I pray you have a blessed week. Thank you for stopping by here.

What are the flowers, leaves, limes, or even dry stuff in your unique and gorgeous life arrangement?


  1. Kay in Cornwall says:

    Those antibiotics should help you soon, Julie. I, too take a supplement to help with the right type of gut flora – acidophilus tablets (or as Alan so embarrassingly called them – antisyphilis tablets!)
    At the moment I have a painful problem with blocked eustachian tubes (sounds like a stop on the underground) although blessedly I don’t have an infection. I just need to breathe in steam with added menthol for relief.
    I love your analogy of the leaves and the Christian life. Especially about the mouldy bits – I’d never thought of it that way.
    Even when you’re ill, you are still able to be so encouraging in your blog posts. Thank you so much for that – God is really using you.
    Love to all

  2. Just Julie says:

    You are a wonderful encouragement as well, dear Kay. And I’m drinking Kefir because (did you know?) some brands have 100x the probiotics than some pills do? Wow. And I actually think the term antisyphilis pills is something I might use forever now. Alan makes me laugh. πŸ™‚

  3. Patty says:

    My first response would be that you, Julie, are a wonderful flower in my life. One that I have not paid much attention to of late, being caught up in the minutia of my own journey. But I think of you often and miss our online word games and our emails!

  4. Just Julie says:

    And ditto to you, Patty! I have thought about you so often these past weeks, and we need to catch up. God bless your day, your week, your spring! xoxo

  5. Ember says:

    Kay – Hopi candles would help a lot with the Eustachian tubes. Biosun make very good ones.

    Julie – Limes. My foray into the Servants With Jesus has been interesting because I am so reclusive that I find the meetings and social encounters required very difficult – the people are all very nice, it’s just me. HSP. Every week I am sorely tempted to chuck it in; but every week I just somehow don’t – because something inside me says no, this is of the Lord, keep going. Why it’s a lime is because if it felt easy and fun I wouldn’t want to chuck it in so I wouldn’t be able to tell if was of the Lord – it could just be an enjoyable hobby. It’s actually *important* that it should be difficult; it’s what continually questions me, ‘Is this really what you want?’

    I’m glad you’re feeling a bit better, but I do hope you pick up soon; this has been such a long illness. xxx

  6. Just Julie says:

    Thank you Ember. I have a plugged ear right now, maybe I should look into the candle as well as Kay. I do think that often some of the most difficult things the Lord calls us to have the greatest blessings behind them. I hope soon some limes turn into flowers. xxoo

  7. Ganeida says:

    I actually really like lemons & limes ~ & some difficult things are things I really enjoy doing: study, abseiling, teaching/preaching. Other things are like off lemons: math stuff/bookwork. Cooking dinner 7 days a week [surely someone should have come up with a better option by now! *sigh*] Socializing. That is a true penance ~ especially if I do it right; you know, smile & speak nicely & pretend I’m interested. I know I’m someone else’s lemon!

    Just now the paranoia is so bad [maybe because I’ve been sick a while now] that I am considering becoming a social media recluse & just shutting everything down. Don’t you just love the irony? I obviously missed the *social* aspect to social media! πŸ˜€

    Meanwhile my cats don’t care. I love cats because they just go on loving me anyway. When I come downstairs in the morning they rush to greet me chatting away about how much they missed me during the watches of the night & they smooch & give kitty hugs. During the day they stretch out a paw when I pass to remind me they’re there, they love me, say hello, give & get a cuddle. They are a good thing in my life & far more reliable than people. πŸ™‚

  8. Just Julie says:

    Thank you for what you shared, Ganeida…although I had a bit of a panic when I read your were considering shutting everything down. Surely not!
    I do hope you’re feeling better soon in all ways, and please give your kitties a pat for me. I’m a dog person but I feel sure I’d like your cats. xxoo

  9. Elizabeth says:

    I’m glad you’re feeling better!
    Every time I try to add your blog to my reader it says, can’t find feed. How do I follow you?

  10. Just Julie says:

    I will email you Elizabeth — thank you for asking! xo

  11. Ember says:

    Ganeida won’t shut down. It is the Spirit that has driven her out here into this wilderness.

  12. Just Julie says:

    That Grandma singing cracked me up, Ember. Maybe it will give Ganeida a little boost! xo

  13. Ganeida says:

    lol Yep, waiting to go Home! πŸ™‚

  14. Just Julie says:

    πŸ˜€ + xo…

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.