Reality Check

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“Reality Checks” are devotional outlines for outdoor preachers and teachers that have worked well on Creation Safaris, in line with our motto Escape to Reality.  These lessons should be thought out with additional Scriptures, explanations, illustrations, and personal testimonies to make them your own.  Above all, handle with prayer.
David F. Coppedge

WORDS of WISDOM from WILDFLOWERS

Theme:  Wildflowers are examples of nature lessons Christ used and the Bible mentions in several places.  They have much to tell us about God’s creative wisdom, and about our own spiritual lives as well.

I.  OBSERVATIONS

Lab exercise:  Have the group spread out and observe wildflowers for a while.  Have them write down their observations and make sketches.  Teach them to observe fine details.  Then, have everyone come together and share their observations as a group.  These might include:
A.  Their beauty and design.
B.  Their functionality.
C.  Their smallness.
D.  Their fragility.
E.  Their amazing biology and chemistry:

  1. Some have growth inhibitor molecules that must be leached out by sufficient rain before germination can occur.
  2. Some seeds can remain dormant for decades until the right conditions prevail.
  3. Macroscopic structures are intricate: anthers, pollen, pistils, ovules, corollae, circulatory system, colors, shapes to match insect pollinators.
  4. Microscopic processes are mind-boggling: DNA code, mitosis, meiosis, defense, metabolism, photosynthesis.
F.  Their amazing life cycles from seed to flower to seed again.
G.  Their interactions with other living things, e.g. honeybees, symbiosis, mutualism.

II.  COMMENTARY:  Wildflowers in the Bible
Job 14:2 Man . . . is short lived, like a flower comes forth and withers.
Psalm 1 Righteous are like a tree planted by streams of water.  Wicked are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
Ps 103:15ffAs for man, his days are like . . . the flower of the field, so he flourishes . . . the wind passes over, and it is no more, and its place acknowledges it no longer, but the lovingkindness of the Lord is everlasting.
Isa 40:6 Grass withers, flower fades, but the Word of God abides forever.
Isa 53:1-2 For (Messiah) grew up before Him like a tender shoot, like a root out of parched ground . . . He had no stately form or majesty.
Matt 6:28ff Observe how lilies of the field grow; they do not toil or spin, yet Solomon in all his glory not arrayed like one of these . . . Will God not much more do so for you?
Jas 1:10ff Rich man . . . like flowering grass passes away; sun rises with scorching wind, flower falls off and the beauty of its appearance is destroyed; so too the rich man.
I Pet 1:23ff Born again not of corruptible seed, but by the living word of God.  For all flesh is like grass (quotes Isa 40:6)
Recommended resources:
Hepper, F. Nigel, Baker Encyclopedia of Bible Plants, Baker Book House (Grand Rapids, 1992).  Use this to identify species of plants in your area that are similar to Bible plants.  Bible stories involving these plants can become more realistic as you observe the real thing.

Baerg, Harry J., Complete Illustrated Guide to Bible Plants and Animals, vol. 3, Plants; Review and Herald Publishing Co. (Washington D.C., 1989).

Video: Journey of Life and Wonders of God's Creation, I: Planet Earth (Moody Video).