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Picking Out Poinsettias and Passed-Over Prizes

Picking Out Poinsettias and Passed-Over Prizes

I love bright red Christmas poinsettias. Something about the star-like winter blooms seems cheery and almost sacred, as we send them to loved ones and set them out to decorate for the birthday of the Lord.

Poinsettias are also called the Christmas Star and the Christmas flower, pointing back to the legendary link between these festive flowers and the Christian holiday celebrating the Holy Nativity.

What do poinsettias have to do with Christmas?

According to an old Mexican legend, the poinsettia was part of a Christmas Eve miracle.

Apparently, a peasant child was walking to church for a holiday service. She had no money to bring for an offering, but she picked a few weeds from the edge of the road along the way. When the youngster placed the weeds by the church altar, the leaves turned scarlet and bright green.

Some say an angel instructed the child to pick the weeds as a Christmas Eve offering. Others insist it was the girl’s own idea.

Either way, the poinsettia became a traditional Christmas floral decoration.

Found flowers are extra-fun.

This Christmas season, I summoned the gumption to ask for help with a creaky ladder in my garage. The attic overhead held boxes of Christmas decorations that had been stashed for several years. One large covered tub contained dozens of red velvet poinsettias. I gasped to see the forgotten treasures, passed-over prizes from Christmases past.

Those fancy Christmas flowers now adorn the Christmas tree (see photo), which we have enjoyed all season.

Somehow, I think God enjoys such surprises too. I wonder if He chuckles to see our delight when lost things become found things. After all, He is the Seeker of those who are Lost, the Shepherd of lost sheep and the all-knowing Lover of our souls.

“For the Son of Man came
to seek and to save the lost.”
(Luke 19:10, NIV)

Since uncovering my long-lost bounty of blooms for this Christmas, I may never look at poinsettias the same way. This perennial pleasure of the holiday season may be rooted in a Mexican legend, but it holds new meaning for me.

Like my long-dusty poinsettias, I once was lost, but I have been found. And the One who found me has restored me. And I am still praying for others yet to be found and restored.

What a gift at Christmas or any day!

Related Items:

Poinsettia Flowers - Public Domain Art
Poinsettia-Decked Christmas Tree
Photo copyrighted by Linda Ann Nickerson – Nickers and Ink

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1 comment:

  1. That's a great story! And just think; if the rest of your Advent series posts are going to get shorter and shorter (like this one!) then you WILL catch up!