A few weeks ago when the first bouts of warm weather foreshadowed Spring, I joyfully toiled in my rose garden as I yanked up weeds, collected miscellaneous trash that navigated its way to my urban oasis, and pruned away damaged, diseased, or dead canes. Upon doing so, I had to practice a bit of gymnastics or perhaps yoga to conform my body into some unwelcomed areas within and around my rose bushes. Unfortunately, I made the foolish decision to wear nothing but sandals while my legs and ankles were only mere inches from piercing pain.
And although I was surprisingly more limber than anticipated, my cell phone’s startling ringtone combined with a charlie horse in my foot stole my much needed concentration! Consequently, my ankle rammed into the thorns, or more accurately stated the prickles, I so gingerly tried to avoid. While accepting that prickly moment, my head flew back crying out in pain only to be greeted by a crown of thorns. So there I was in pain looking like the scary Carrie from that old horror film, hobbling to my persistent cell phone, which turned out to be just my husband wanting to see how my day’s been. It took an act of grace to not lash out upon feeling the full ramifications of such a precarious matter.
After running out to purchase mid-calf garden boots, I pondered on how painful it must have been for Jesus to wear His crown of thorns the Romans crushed into His skull full of wisdom and decided grace. Interestingly enough, the bush with the unimaginable prickles that pierced my flesh is called Fourth of July. Surely it’s no coincidence the extraordinarily thorny rose bush named in honor of our freedom reminded me of The One who longed to pierce our hearts when He willingly made a way for our eternal freedom.