Monday, February 11, 2013



what's that all about??!! 

has everything to do with how we go through the valley rather than how we try to skirt around the valley, finding even more hindrances in our path of life. 

SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING means that none of us are exempt from suffering, but that we can have victory even while suffering. 

VICTORY?? Yes Victory. 

This last summer was a prime example of seeing first hand Victorious Daylilies and Suffering Daylilies. So permit me please to offer a parable.

This past season(including March through November) was totally unlike anything I have experienced in my gardening "career". March was excessively warm...April into May was excessively cold (even freezing temperatures) and the rest of the season was excessively dry. References by the daylily people called it the Summer Malaise because of how the daylilies responded to all the stress. 

BUT not all the daylilies responded poorly to this Summer Malaise. For some you would'nt even know they were in stress....that's what I call SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING in the daylily realm. The seedling below is a prime example of SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING.

Let me introduce you to 
        "Opportunity Knocks" 
 There is a story behind "Opportunity Knocks" (there's a story behind the name also..for later). I had bought 4 unbloomed seedlings from a Daylily Auction seller, planted them all in the same row and out of that this is the only one that bloomed-but it took two more years!We buy unbloomed seedling to jump-start our hybridizing programs. Two died the first summer,and one still languishes as a tiny tiny fan. This one should have bloomed the first summer it was planted here, but instead it grew larger and larger and decided not to bloom the following summer,2011. Last summer was its third year and again it was taller and bigger around... and to my great delight it bloomed for the first time June 29th and by September 8th it still had 6 more blooms coming! For a daylily that is a very long bloom period and a very vigorous plant...SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING throughout the Summer Malaise.

Here is a photo of "Opportunity Knocks" in the midst of the summer drought, unfazed after 3 weeks of no rain, only the morning due, blooming away..the only clue it is suffering is the blooms are not fully open. 

So how does that pertain 
to us as humans? Just as in daylilies, in order to get maximum results, the soil we are planted in makes all the difference in the world. If our soil is like shifting sand, we will never be grounded and any care or anxiety will uproot us to think that even the most minor thing will bring us into feeling sorry for our selves and make us think we are actually suffering. So that, any ability to see the good out of the bad, any ability to have victory over our circumstances is hidden in all our worries,all our resentments and angers, and all our fears. If "Opportunity Knocks" didn't have a vigorous disposition with an excellent root system,it would have languished along with so many of its field-mates last summer. 

This next daylily is a registered daylily by a well known hybridizer, Ted Petit called TURN THE KALEIDOSCOPE and it started its bloom season June 28th and ended August 10th     
It was still flat and wide open on
the last day of bloom.The night before had gone down to 57degrees which usually keeps most blooms from opening fully. Another vigorous daylily, Southern bred, just like the genetics in "Opportunity Knocks". It SUFFERED SUCCESSFULLY, it thrived despite adversity which is what so many of us are working towards with our daylily, whether Southern or Northern bred. 

Which brings me to the thought about making excuses for why we are the way we are. 

hinder us 
from growing,
from cultivating, 
from struggling
through the valley.
paralyse us 
from even reaching for victory in our suffering...

All of life, has versions of suffering, but it is 
our attitudes, 
our perspectives 
our support groups 
that will either lift us up or bring us down. 

We can do nothing about what family we were planted in to...but we can accept the fact that our Creator planted us into that family and has a plan for good for us and not for evil. That isn't reasoning, 
but it is the truth 
and when we believe that truth, accept that truth 
and deal with that truth, 
it is only then that we can 'walk through the valley of the shadow of death and fear no evil'.

It is in the 
walking through, 
believing good 
will come, 
persisting in Faith in a good God,
a loving God and a Perfect God that we walk through to the other side of Victory! 

The above dayliy is indirectly named after my father. He was SLOW TO ANGER and this daylily represents and reminds me of my father and my Father God's edict to 'be slow to anger and to not let the sun go down upon my wrath'. A loving and kind man,it was very difficult for him to be angry. He had a deep faith in our heavenly Father and it brought him through years of losing the family farm and poverty. During the latter years of his life he made the statement "who would have thought I would have all of this?". And "all" he had was an average Richfield Mn. home with a huge 20 x 20 addition added on it to house our young people's get-togethers. He was always kind, had horrible aches and pains from a bad hip, but never a cross word and always a smile on his face. I remember his being angry two times in my life time. That's slow to anger! What was his secret? Well he loved his God, his Jesus, his wife and daughters, home and country. He didn't have what anyone would call a successful career or a great athletic body or lots of dollars to spend on others or himself. But he DID have gratitude to his Lord and Savior and for his life and all his days on this earth. He died too early (age 71) and I still miss him.

SLOW TO ANGER was so stable last summer it was almost scarry! It NEVER had a "bad hair day". I hope to breed it with "Opportunity Knocks" to fix those traits.

I have way too many SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING daylilies to show on this "short" blog so I will close with one more. This is out of (JOHNNY CASH X LARRY'S OBSESSION) and it was a gift to me from a gal in Lousiana...another Southern bred! It bloomed from June 28th to August 7th with very good consistency....If it were a human being it would have had to be one that 'thinks on the good,lovely,pure and true' rather than all the rotten things in life, all the worrisome things in life, and all the disappointing things in life.

I personally have found that if I dwell on the negatives of life rather than the blessedness of life, I can completely uproot any joy that might be available for me. It was back when I had blood clots in my lungs that I began my journey of SUCCESSFUL SUFFERING and it truly is a journey....

I don't know how I would have reacted if Superstorm Sandy had come through here and totally uprooted my life...

but I do know that when I do my best to apply Biblical principles, and the truths of what Jesus has told us, I can SUFFER SUCCESSFULLY, whether I am suffering at this exact moment, or am ready for the next valley to pass through...I know that I know that HE is with me and will never leave me or forsake me....I may need to be patient..I may need to exercise more prayer, and I certainly will need to apply what I know...that's all that He asks of me...He will do the rest!

The first blooms with all sorts of weeds competing with it..but because of its vigor it is able to rise above the circumstances.

The two blooms above are mid- summer bloom and this single one is still beautiful with just eight  more blooms to come for the season,

Just one more photo and this is a collage of my JOHNNY CASH seedlings that bloomed last year. 
They are half-sibs to the beauty above. I am sure you can spot the one I have been bragging about!