A few weeks back I stumbled upon a beautiful flower bed. Well if you’ve been hanging around here for any amount of time, you know how I love flowers. In fact I’m a sucker for them. I oooh and aahh at just about any flower I come upon. My family would tell you I’m addicted.
Anyway, the flower bed was stunning! As I turned and paused to face it to take it all in, I instantly noticed one spectacular orange flower in the midst of the entire bed of reddish ones.
And at that moment I felt like the Lord whispered, “You’re the orange flower. You stick out. You’re different. I created you to be different. Stand out!” The Lord used that orange flower to speak so loudly to me, I kind of gasped! I pulled out my cell to capture it in the bright sunlight. I wanted that word from the Lord through that lone flower to speak to me over and over! He created me to be different.
Ho-hum will never do.
Average isn’t an option.
Being just like everybody else, is just that. It’s just like everybody else.
And that wasn’t His plan from the beginning of time.
We were each created to be His hands and His feet. I mean guys, who is going to be His hands and feet if we aren’t? I mean.
Think about it – “normal” is so normal!! Who really, really, really, really wants to just be known as normal? Floating through life like everyone else?? Really? For starters, that’s so incredibly boring!! Like at the end of your life do want to be known by “he or she was a nice person.” The world doesn’t miss nice people. It misses the difference-makers, because that’s what counts. Making a difference for Christ will leave a lasting imprint on the world as we know it. And so being crazy for Christ is the only option!!
Now hang on. Lest you think that you are “too old” or even “too young” to get crazy – think again!!
Our God is a timeless God!! Age makes zero difference to Him.
Get up and do something!! Be different! Get crazy for Christ!!
And for goodness sake, quit praying about what you should do. Just do something! Doing anything for Christ will never be out of His will. Never, not ever.
Here’s just a few crazy ideas: Become a foster parent. There are 415,000+ kids in foster care in the United States!! Become a respite foster parent. Don’t be average. Give an adoptive parent a rest. Help fundraise for someone adopting. Get out of normal. Adopt an aging out treasure. Your age doesn’t matter. GO serve the orphans somewhere. And if you already went? GO again. Move outside the box – then burn your box!! Host an orphan this summer. Have a lemonade stand to feed the orphans. Be the crazy one!! Host two orphans this summer!! Retirement isn’t an option.
Life is too short to be average. It’s just way too short.
Be the crazy one (with me)!
Thank you Shannon!!
Every time you write, I am so inspired. I feel like you are saying the exact encouraging words that I need… to take the next step, to do the next thing, to listen and obey, to wait for the Lord’s instructions… Thank you for sharing your wisdom, passion and love. I always feel braver and more courageous after each post- I know God has a plan and I’m listening and waiting patiently.
Awwww Cindy, my faraway-not-yet-met friend!! I so needed your words this morning. I can’t even tell you. I pray you and your family come visit…I know Dw has given your hubby the invite. Please come. We could use some fun!! xo
Thanks for the encouragement! I’m off to Zambia in November to work as an OB/GYN for 6 months and both excited and nervous, so any encouragement is much appreciated!
Praise the Lord Alex for your being an Orange flower in a bed of reddish ones!! I love that you are off to Zambia!! May God multiply your word a thousand fold and give you peace and joy in the entire process!! He’s gonna’ use you BIG TIME!! xo
Thanks! This made me chuckle – I was reading your one of your old posts last night and you’d about how you pray each night that God would wake you in the morning when he wants to spend time with you. This had never occurred to me and seemed like novel idea so I thought I would try, but felt a little sceptical as I’m super tired having just come off nights and didn’t think it was likely I’d wake up from any subtle whispers/”knocks” from God having completely slept through 2 alarms the prev day. Well this morning I was woken to a very loud repetitive knocking on my door from the (usually fairly quiet) cleaner w the vacuum cleaner – God definitely knew a subtle whisper wouldn’t wake me up!
Well I love that there were clear, loud knocks!! Somedays I giggle at the way I wake up – and the time! Whew!!
Just what I needed to ask hubby about hosting this summer.
GO Debbie!! Do it!! I pray you do!! It will change the life of that one AND perhaps he/she’s forever family will find them!!
Dare to be differant is something I have said almost everyday for years. Dare to be believe God can use little me and little you. We have nine special children seven adopted with a dare to be differant kind of way. My kids rock they are all orange. Love them love their supper power of differant. Love that He allows little me to be used by Him. I’m forever different
I love that you are raising ORANGE flowers! You and I can be orange flowers forever together!! xo
Have never aspired to being normal. Much more interesting not being. 🙂
haha!! You are so right!! It is much more interesting being the orange flower!!
Love this post!!!!! As our peers nests empty out, we are looking at adopting again. Your words and example no doubt speak life to dreams and result in one more miracle….in countless lives. Thanks for en encouraging us to step out of the boat again- towards our Redeemer.
Bless you Christy for your kind words.
our second bio child graduates from high school in few weeks and then our large home will be down to 2 children. these 2 are our sweet blessings who became ours through the miracle of adoption (one who gave us a run for our money & over the y.e.a.r.s. has become the best best blessing). I was literally JUST thinking about adoption & how we can support others, & about foster care & how I want to get licensed & fill our house . . . and then I looked at facebook & here was this post . . . .
so thanks for always cheering us on to “be the crazy ones”
yes. just yes.
Ellie, thank you for encouraging me through your obedience!! You will have to share what God does through you!! Promise to always, always be the orange flower with me!
Oh how I LOVE this post! Orange is my favorite color AND I want nothing more in this life than to be used in a mighty way by HIM!! 🙂 Swimming upstream is SO much more fulfilling…
Swimming upstream is so much better!! Love that!! And I think it’s pretty amazing that Orange is your fav color!! Yippee Jesus!!
God uses you as a powerful vessel – thank you for sharing your crazy so passionately 🙂 your words have spoken deeply to my heart in a difficult season in which I have questioned living so differently than those around us and craving a little “normalcy”. In my heart of hearts, I know that’s not how He has formed us…but this week has felt overwhelming and crushing. I have followed silently and prayerfully – now prompted to send my thanks! God bless!
Leah ~ Thank you for coming forward and sharing your heart. I don’t take you doing that lightly. It’s funny Leah. After I wrote it I questioned if it was too strongly written since people can’t hear my voice and could interrupt it as too strong. I’m just so wishing that everyone would see the common thread throughout scripture is to live like the orange flower!! And when we live like the orange flower there is so much joy!! Anyway, thank you friend. I love that you are an orange flower with me!! xo #orangeflowersgottasticktogether
I know you’ve shared before, but, can you post a link about hosting orphans?
I will try to do a post soon!! Thank you for reminding me!!
YES on the fostering! After we adopted (and after the dust settled, which took a while!) we still had a valid homestudy, so we fostered. It was crazy sometimes, but there’s no way I would trade the privilege of knowing and loving on those treasures for the “easier” life we might have had without them. And ironically, we are doing respite care this week! Even if you can’t do a full-time placement, it is a huge help to foster families to have respite care available. Often the need for respite is not even that the child is especially difficult to care for. We have done respite several times for families who needed to travel and couldn’t bring the child(ren) with them, and once for a family where the foster dad was having surgery.
I love that Linette!! Thank you for being another voice, through your comment that fostering is a joy!! And respite is a viable alternative to someone who can’t do permanent. Bless you my friend!!