St Peters UCC Grant Park, IL





                                           Daffodil Principle

you must come see the daffodils before they are over.”  I wanted to
go, but it was a two-hour drive from Laguna to Lake Arrowhead.
“I will come next Tuesday,” I promised, a little reluctantly, on her
third call.

Next Tuesday dawned cold and rainy.  Still, I had
promised, and so I drove there.  When I finally walked into
Carolyn’s house and hugged and greeted my grandchildren, I said,
“Forget the daffodils, Carolyn!  The road is invisible in the clouds
and fog, and there is nothing in the world except you and the
children that I want to see bad enough to drive another inch!”
My daughter smiled calmly and said, “We drive in this all
the time, Mother.”  “Well, you won’t get me back on the road until
it clears, and then I’m heading for home.” I assured her.
“I was hoping you’d take me over to the garage to pick up
my car.”  “How far will we have to drive?”  “Just a few blocks,”
Carolyn said.  “I’ll drive.  I’m used to this.”
After several minutes, I had to ask, “Where are we going? 
This isn’t the way to the garage!”  “We’re going to my garage the
long way,” Carolyn smiled, “by way of the daffodils.”  “Carolyn,”
I said sternly, “please turn around.”  “It’s all right, Mother, I
promise.  You will never forgive yourself if you miss this

After about twenty minutes, we turned onto a small gravel
road and I saw a small church.  On the far side of the church, I saw
a hand-lettered sign that read, “Daffodil Garden.”  We got out of
the car and each took a child’s hand, and I followed Carolyn down
the path.  Then, we turned a corner of the path, and I looked up and

Before me lay the most glorious sight.  It looked as though
someone had taken a great vat of gold and poured it down the
mountain peak and slopes.  The flowers were planted in majestic,
swirling patterns – great ribbons and swaths of deep orange, white,
lemon yellow, salmon pink, saffron, and butter yellow.  Each
different-colored variety was planted as a group so that it swirled and flowed like its own river with its own unique hue.  There were
five acres of flowers.

‘But who has done this?”  I asked Carolyn.  “It’s just one
woman,” Carolyn answered.  “She lives on the property.  That’s
her home.”  Carolyn pointed to a well kept A frame house that
looked small and modest in the midst of all that glory.  We walked
up to the house.  On the patio, we saw a poster.  “Answers to the
Questions I know you are Asking” was the headline.  The first
answer was as simple one.  “50,000 bulbs,” it read.  The second
answer was, “One at a time, by one woman.  Two hands, two feet
and a very little brain.”  The third answer was, “Began in 1958.”
There it was, The Daffodil Principle.  For me, that moment
was a life-changing experience.  I thought of this woman whom I
had never met, who, more than forty years before, had begun – one
bulb at a time – to bring her vision of beauty and joy to an obscure
mountain top.  Still, just planting one bulb at a time, year after
year, had changed the world.  This unknown woman had forever
changed the world in which she lived.  She had created something
of indescribable magnificence, beauty and inspiration.
When we multiply tiny pieces of time with small increments of daily effort, we too will find we can accomplish agnificent things.  We can change the world.

“It makes me sad in a way,” I admitted to Carolyn.  “What might I have accomplished if I had thought of a wonderful goal hirty-five or forty years ago and had worked away at it ‘one bulb at a time’ through all those years?  Just think what I might have achieved!”

My daughter summed up the message of the day in her
usual direct way.  “Start tomorrow,” she said.  It’s so pointless to
think of the lost hours or yesterdays.  The way to make learning a
lesson of celebration instead of a cause for regret is to only ask,
“How can I put this to use today?”
So, stop waiting…Until your car or home is paid off….Until you
get a new car or home….Until your kids leave the house…..Until
you go back to school…..Until you finish school…..Until you lose
10 lbs….Until you gain 10 lbs……Until you get married….Until
you get a divorce…..Until you have kids…..Until you retire…..Until summer……Until spring……Until winter…..Until  fall…..Until you die.

   There is no better time than right now to begin.  Life is a journey,
not a destination. There is new life all around us!  Spring is the
reminder that God love us so much that, because of Jesus, we have
been gifted with new life!  Thanks be to God!  Christ HAS Risen!!
-shared by Rev. Tom Norwalk at an Eastern-Western Association

Rev. Jan