Christians should take lesson from sunflower

By Judy Brandon: Local Columnist

Some months ago I received in the mail several sample packages of wildflower seeds. When planting time came, I scattered those wildflower seeds throughout my flower beds and anticipated what would spring up over the following weeks.

Now among my zinnias, marigolds and Johnny jumping jacks, I have beautiful wildflowers. Standing tall and in full bloom, part of those wildflowers are sunflowers. It seems that sunflowers just go along with this time of year when it is back-to-school and fair time.

But I noticed the sunflowers in my backyard behave differently than the sunflowers in the farmers’ fields. I made a trip to Lubbock the other day. As I passed a field on my way, sunflowers in this farmer’s field were facing the east. On the way home in the late afternoon, I noticed the same sunflowers facing west.

Thinking this might be just my imagination in high gear, I decided to really watch for some sunflowers along the way to Lubbock a few days later. I chose a different field to see if it was the same with those sunflowers. On my trip east, I again noticed the sunflowers were facing east on the way to Lubbock and west on the return trip. I reasoned the sunflowers had just followed the sun.

I am clueless when it come to horticulture and I have absolutely no idea about the scientific reason or explanation behind this wonder. So I called a friend of mine who is a farmer and sought his advice. Was it my imagination or do sunflowers really turn toward the sun?

My friend verified my observation. He said that sunflowers do move with the position of the sun. That is exactly how they got their name.

The spiritual connection is this: When I get off focus, when I get caught up in everyday worries, frustrations and situations, I get down. I get so busy and so caught up in worry that God is not first in my mind.

Yet, I know what I should do. When I keep my thoughts and aspirations on the Jesus, I get strength to face the things of the day. Jesus is the breath of life for everyday subsistence. Without him, I would wilt and dry up and falter at anything I attempt. That is precisely what Jesus meant when he said “Without me you can nothing.” (John 15:5)

In a world that is so uncertain, it is comforting to know that if our thoughts are always toward him and his will for our lives, we will thrive with our faces to the son. Paul said it well when he said to “fix our thoughts on Jesus.” (Hebrew 3:1)
I just do better if I face the son. That is the spiritual lesson I learned from the sunflower.

Judy Brandon is an instructor at Clovis Community College. Contact her at: