Summer is the time for Vacation Bible Schools and camp times at Smyrna Presbyterian Church and Salem United Methodist Church. One of the favorite stories used with children is Daniel in the Lions Den. His daily prayers facing Jerusalem set him apart and his enemies caused him to be thrown into a den full of lions. As the story goes, God caused the lions to ignore Daniel.
Darius, the king of Babylon, who held Daniel in high regard, was amazed at this. Note the words the king used when addressing him, once he realized the lions had not eaten Daniel. "And when he had come near the den to Daniel, he cried out with a troubled voice. The king spoke and said to Daniel, 'Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you constantly serve, been able to deliver you from the lions?' (Dan. 6:20)."
For many of us, life has many "lion's dens" that threaten our career, family, friends, or us individually. With some of us, it is a physical battle with cancer. For others, it is an emotional battle with depression. Jesus told his followers in Matthew 28:20, "and lo, I am with you, until the end of the age."
May you trust in, rely on, and cling to this truth in simple faith. He will not leave you, nor forsake you, if you have such simple faith in His love as is expressed in the life and teaching of Jesus.FRAGRANT FOAMFLOWER
Tiarella cordifoliaThe fragrant foamflower is not common to this area of Georgia but is more frequently found in the mountains. However, in the right environment it is seen here.
I think the person who originally named this species must have been nearsighted. The tiny white flowers flourish on racemes; that is, they cluster along a single spike, as illustrated. Each -inch bloom has five oval petals and 10 yellow stamens.
If seen afar and with slight myopia, I guess one might find the common name does have some merit.
The foamflower generally blooms in late spring but does not tolerate drought conditions. It is on the endangered plant list in Wisconsin. However, it seems to survive OK in other states east of the Mississippi River.
The myopic problem has another manifestation, this time in the Latin descriptor "cordifolia." That word implies the leaves are "heartshaped." In my illustration, you may note the leaves look more like maple leaves than like hearts; however, being afflicted with nearsightedness, as I was before cataract surgery, I suppose there is a modest justification for the use of "cordifolia."
This wildflower, native to America, is a perennial whose leaves arise on petioles (stem-like structures that hold the leaf) at the base of the stem. The foamflower spreads by short rhizomes. It does not grow well in pine thickets but prefers dense hardwoods and rich, moist soils that are well drained.
Orrin Morris is a retired Baptist minister, local artist and art teacher. Notecards are available of the wildflowers published in the Citizen. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org or call him at 770-929-3697.