Life Lessons from the Botanical Garden

The automatic doors whooshed open, and we walked inside the glass dome. The air felt heavy and humid. Voices hushed and murmured. Despite the general peace and quiet under the sparkling dome, the botanical garden had much to teach about the colorful abundance and orderly chaos of life.

Reach for the light. The flowers in the garden turn their blooms toward the sun and rise slowly upward from the ground. The trees are always striving from the darkness of the earth toward the brightness of the sky. In life, we grow when we look up. We have to keep stretching skyward, always reaching toward a better life and a brighter atmosphere.  

Have deep roots. Tall trees and shrubs spread their root systems downward to hold them firmly in place. The taller the tree reaches, the farther its roots spread beneath, and the stronger the trunk will stand. The values we practice and the beliefs we hold will secure us firmly when storms rage and winds blow. The higher we want to go, the stronger and deeper our foundations need to be.

Hold on to what you love. Vines entwine great tree trunks and climb forever upwards with their support. Their clinging branches need something to support them as they seek for higher ground. We all need others to hold us up and help us reach our highest purpose. When we find the causes and people that give our lives meaning, we need to wrap them tight and hold them close.

But know when to let go. The earth turns, the air cools, and trees lose their once-green leaves. Seasons of growth and change are part of the natural progression of life. We need to recognize when old situations or relationships are no longer helping us learn. Sometimes we will have to release what we once had and move on to a new season of growth.

Be colorful. Each leaf in the botanical garden is different. Every bloom is a carefully crafted original of beauty and design. Each person is made to fulfill a different purpose within God’s vast creation. Every one of us can find her perfect place and perform her unique contribution.

The doors whooshed shut behind us when we left the garden. The trees continued reaching, flowers went on blooming without our interference. Life moves on without our constant direction or control. The earth turns at God’s command, and we can be comforted that all is safe within his hands.


How do you recognize the abundance of life surrounding you? Where do you go to remember the perfection of God’s creation?


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