Being a Methodist, I'll call it the Flower of the Holy Spirit, but whatever your choice, it definitely shows one of the faithful's favorite symbols of peace and love which we need in our hearts always. Just look at the top picture as the bud matures and begins the process of blooming. You can see the head of the little dove emerging, as if the base of the flower is his nest, then in the picture below showing its beauty and grace for all to see as the visible bloom opens the wings as if ready to fly away. We can just imagine it leaving the nest and soaring, rising high above us as a perfect representative of Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace, King of Kings and our Redeemer.
The flower is native to the rainy of Central America and is the national flower of Panama. It grows on the moss found near the damp ground on trees and it is so popular that it nearly went extinct due to the harvesting of the flower by those who knew where to find it. Steps have been taken to preclude its demise and it can be grown in greenhouses as long as the conditions can be properly maintained. In the Central American mild winters when the hammock allows the sun to show through is when the plants get their start, then they bloom in late summer. The mature blooms hold up well and that's why they are in demand by people of faith who have access to them for special Christian occasions when available.
Seeing this beautiful flower now in the latter part of February where evidence of an early Florida spring might be building, my thoughts turn to the upcoming Easter season and what it means to we Christians. We know that the upcoming Holy Week and the sadness of the pain and suffering of Good Friday which is followed by the joy and celebration of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday represents what Christ did for us. And the little flower just reminds me that the only way to escape the chains of sin and the end of life through our mortality is with faith in He who gave His everything for us. God does truly work in mysterious ways with beautiful reminders to us of His love. All we have to do is look around at the other wonders like that beautiful orchid that are all around us. Isn't it time to smell the roses, or the orchids for that matter? I think it's way past time.