January 5, 2014 by Jess

A new year rises, ready for new beginnings…

It’s the time of year when we look forward to fresh starts.  In order to leave behind the mistakes and blurred lines of the past we set goals and strive to build motivation to fulfil that which last year failed to reveal.

As the new year dawns hope rises amongst the blur of 2013.  We hope that out of the blur a fresh shoot can arise, that we need not remain trapped in the wilting remains of past choices.


These Orange Lilies grow at our backdoor.  Such vibrant beauty in an otherwise green garden should not go un-noticed.  However, they are easily overlooked in an unpredictable summer where there has been as many indoor moments, due to rain, as out.  They too become a part of the blur as one seeks to get inside before the next thunder plump comes through.


After more rain, ruining picnic plans, and instead an afternoon monopoly game complete with niggles, I took a wander outdoors.  Sunday afternoon leisure bought the time to notice these stems of hope amongst the overgrown wilderness.  I was struck by these beginnings, so muted and simple, that overflow into floral brilliance.
Orange LilyIs this not what we long for with the new year.  A new beginning that overflows, rising vibrantly clear of our blurred past. ‘Overflow’ is my theme for 2014.  This has been swirling round in my mind for about a week thanks to the sermon challenge these past two sundays.

For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks. [Luke 6v45b]

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. [Colossians 2v6-7]

In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity.  [2 Corinthians 8v2]

You see in all my years of setting goals, be fitter, stronger, cleverer, less busy, less angry…, ultimately it is ‘i’ that fails.  I lack the motivational source.  For as much as I want to be fit I also want to stay cosy inside on a cold rainy day.  Or as much as I long to avoid anger I also long to have my own way.  I try but I cannot reach my own goals. These lilies, they don’t fail.  Simply by fact of being a lily they move from muted stems of hope into vibrant overflowing beauty.

Orange Lily

What about me? I try so hard, but can I just be?  As I have been reminded at church in recent weeks there is an overflow to ‘being’ in Christ. As a lily overflows in orange brilliance a Christ follower overflows from a heart full of Christ.  A Christ follower will overflow in thankfulness, joy, generosity, love, hope…  They will not need new years resolutions, a hyped up motivation, they will like a lily simply need to be.  They will need to be in Christ.

2014’s beginning for me is to go deeper into Christ, to know Him more, to trust Him more, to drink from His streams of living water and let it be.  As I seek to rest in Christ alone, I wait to watch the vibrant overflow, His work in me.

This post is part of the WeeklyPhotoChallenge show us ‘BEGINNING”.

© J.Smith Photography and ‘illuminating the invisible’ (2012-2014)

6 thoughts on “beginning

  1. […] Lilies: […]

  2. Penny says:

    Beautiful Jess. great photos and great illustration. look forward to your posts this year and seeing more of how God works in your life. 🙂

  3. Melanie says:

    Beautiful. You have a wonderful way with words. All the best for 2014 🙂

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© J.Smith Photography and 'illuminating the invisible' (2012-2014). Excerpts, images and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to J.Smith Photography and 'illuminating the invisible' with appropriate and specific direction to the original content. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s creator and author is strictly prohibited.

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