Rose of Sharon

Each day last week on my way to Vacation Bible School, I passed a Rose of Sharon bush. When I was a girl, we had several of these bushes in our back yard. I always remember that they bloomed in the late summer when not much else was blooming.  Much later when I became a Christian, I learned that the bible includes a reference to the Rose of Sharon.  Song of Songs 2:1, “I am the rose of Sharon, a lily of the valleys.” (NIV) Most commentators consider this a reference to Jesus Christ.  He is the Rose of Sharon and the lily of the valleys. I was excited to share my thoughts about how Jesus, like the Rose of Sharon flower, comes to us when we are in the parched land of the summer season.  He provides the beauty in our life during the times when we are struggling.

While that is true, the analogy didn’t hold when I looked up rose of Sharon in different commentaries. I found out that I was incorrect in my thinking.  The rose of sharon of today is not the same flower in biblical times.  The rose of Sharon during that time was probably a common flower with a bulb like a crocus or a daffodil. The NLT version of the bible even translates the passage as, ” I am the spring crocus blooming on the Sharon Plain, the lily of the valley.” Both the crocus and the daffodil bloom early in the Spring before many other flowers are out, at least in the NE US.  If we take this version of the flower, we can say that Jesus, the Rose of Sharon comes to us when we are in the midst of the cold, wet, early springtime.

Whether the Rose of Sharon blooms in summer or spring doesn’t matter.  Jesus meets us when and where we need Him.

Jesus meets us in the midst of all of our seasons of life.  He comes in the summer when we need nourishment, in the fall during the harvest of plenty, in the winter when we are resting, and in the spring when the rain brings renewal.  He is always there with us. Romans 8:35, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?” (NIV)