read to feed the soul

Written by FBJ Women for Women

September 10, 2020

by: Camille Anding

A Floral Obedience

It was time to restock paper supplies so I was pushing my cart down the aisle toward the paper towels. This particular aisle housed a few gardening items, but it was the bloom on the box that captured my attention and blotted paper towels from my attention.

I stopped and reached for the shoebox-size item and examined it more closely. The box was sealed, but a brief read on its contents and the picture of the giant cotton candy pink bloom that it advertised succeeded in reaching its targeted buyer. It went to the checkout stand alongside the paper towels and paper plates.

The possibility of enjoying an indoor preview of spring had me opening the box before storing my purchases. The brown plastic pot was far from attractive, but it was the contents that I would prize. A small compressed clump of soil-like substance came to life in the pot after a saturating water bath. Then came the bulb planting.

I pulled it from the box bottom and observed it closely. Was it possible that this onion-like object held a magnificent bloom like pictured on the box label? Its roots were matted and semi-dry. A brown husk slipped off its outer casing as I examined it more closely. Its sole promise of life peeked from its crown – a tiny sliver of green.

The planting directions were simple, and my giant blooming amaryllis was placed near a sunny window within minutes. I admired the blossom on the box cover once more before tossing it in the garbage.
Somewhere between the garbage lid closing and my walk to the den, my mind went from the amaryllis bloom to an elderly friend I had met. She lived alone and could only enjoy her backyard from her small deck. Mobility wasn’t a luxury she enjoyed.

I headed my mind off from the track it was taking and told myself I’d share the plant after it bloomed. That was a great idea, but it was mine – not my Father’s. In His still, small voice, He told me He had shown me the amaryllis box so I could purchase it for my confined friend. I was still able to visit nurseries and the floral section at the grocery. She was not.

To avoid further arguing and possible compromise with my flesh, I scooped up the brown plastic pot and headed for a delivery. I told my friend that it didn’t look like much but it held the promise of a beautiful bloom inside its homely body. She smiled and said, “I know – it’s an amaryllis – one of my favorites!”

I left her home totally convinced I had made a heavenly delivery. Obedience, even in little things, always feels right.

“Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as obeying the voice of the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.” 1 Samuel 15:22

Father, thank you for your Holy Spirit that never leaves me and whispers your direction in my life. Please help me to always be sensitive to your voice and obey. It is my desire to please You. Help that desire to grow. Amen

Camille Anding

Camille Anding


  • Camille Anding is a child of God since age 12.
  • Wife of 53 years to Othel; mother to Tahya and Eli;l grandmother to seven grandchildren and two great-grands.
  • Retired from photography business with Othel. Now carry cameras on their travel adventures.
  • Freelance writer, regular contributor to Hometown magazines, and dedicated to living “my utmost for His highest.”