What is "Beautiful for a Day?"
Did you know?
"Hemerocallis means 'beautiful for a day' in Latin. How appropriate!" I found this quote at Wellesley's website while looking for information the Day Lily. Hemerocallis fulva is Day Lily's proper name, and the plant belongs to the Family Liliaceae-- even though it is not a true lily.
This week, I had been sitting at my computer, sometimes staring out the window, for several days, waiting for some kind of inspiration for a poem and comments for this month.
Just a few feet from where I've been sitting are islands of thriving lilies that surround The Inn at Chappel Creek. The orange and yellow blooms, early in the morning, dampened with dew, look so vibrant, yet serene. Of course the obvious biblical application came to mind: Matthew 6 which quotes Jesus' object lesson:
"And why worry about your clothes?
Look at the field lilies!
They don't worry about theirs.
Yet King Solomon in all his glory
was not clothed as beautifully as they.
And if God cares so wonderfully
that are here today
and gone tomorrow,
won't he more surely care for you,
O men of little
The Living Bible
Eugene Peterson puts the passage into somewhat earthier, more modern terms in "The Message" Matthew 6:25-34."If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don't fuss about what's on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.
Jesus' lesson seems so simple and so logical. I marvel at the beauty and functionality of things God has created and continues to spread far and wide with unstinting generosity. He doesn't seem to worry that no one sees some of His marvels. God must be so delightful and stimulating! He certainly is imaginative. I can hardly wait to see Him.
It doesn't seem to matter to God that it takes two to three years for a lily to produce a flower from seed to bloom for only one day and then be gone. Please take a look my poem "Day Lilies at Dawn" on the poetry page. I don't think it is an improvement on the Matthew passage. The Bible says it all, simply and directly.
We know when we seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all the other things we need, in fulfilling His plans for us, will be provided. I don't believe that is an overstatement although sometimes we do have to pray and wait until His answers come.
Now, just for fun, here are some uses for Day Lilies. I personally like the buds fried in butter. I learned that trick in Arkansas where my yard was loaded with edibles: mint, lilies, dill, violets, dandelions.
I did have to chuckle at one online description saying that lilies have alkaloids that can have a laxative effect. I know! I've learned not to eat a whole skilletful at once. But they were sooo good.
Day lilies can be eaten in many ways. The young, unopened flower pods are good dipped in batter and fried in butter. Tubers and young pods can be eaten raw as salad. Dried flowers are sold for their thickening properties. Cooked shoots are described as tasting like asaparagus or green beans. Tubers boiled in salted water taste like boiled peanuts.
This next recipe I haven't tried, but it appeals to my sense of the exotic (that is not toxic misspelled).
* Exported from MasterCook *
SPICED PICKLED DAY-LILY BUDS
Serving Size : 6
2 qt Day lily buds, freshly -boiled and drained
3 c White vinegar 3/4 c Light brown sugar, packed
1/2 ts Salt
1/2 ts Whole allspice
2 Two-inch sticks cinnamon, broken up
10 To 12 whole cloves
Rinse and drain unopened day lily buds; clip off any stem remnants. Put buds in a saucepan; add water barely to cover. Bring quickly to a boil, cover, and simmer 20 minutes. Drain. (At this point, the buds can also be served as a simple vegetable dish after adding salt, pepper, spices, etc. Another thing I do with them is to stuff them with ricotta cheese and serve them that way.) Anyway, back to the canning recipe! Pack hot buds into 8 sterile half-pint canning jars. Combine vinegar, brown sugar, salt, allspice, cinnamon, and cloves in a saucepan and bring to a boil; boil 3 minutes. Pour pickling solution over buds, distributing spices equally. Seal at once.
Yield: 8 half-pints.
Let these stand for a few weeks before using, to further develop the spicy flavor. Note: Don't harvest day lilies within 50 feet of roadways due to automobile emissions.
Let's take a lesson from the lilies:
Trust God for everything and bloom for all you're worth today.
Asking His blessing on us,