Backyard Bouquet: Friendship and Canning Jars

Just Me by Pixabay

Backyard bouquet Photo by April WhiteI amble to the mailbox, praising God for the strength to walk this far. Two doors down, I catch a glimpse of my neighbor returning home from his afternoon walk. Usually his wife of over fifty years accompanies him, but she is recuperating from a recent surgery.

Thinking I should visit soon, a verse I’ve been studying resurfaces, “Go in this strength you have” (Judges 6:14)

Southern hospitality dictates, I deliver a meal, but I’m not up for cooking these days. My mind replays my mother’s mantra, “April Dawn, sometimes you gotta make due with what you have until you can do better.”

Armed with a pair of scissors and a canning jar, I take inventory of my backyard blooms. I snip crimson roses, mint, magenta butterfly blossoms, and sunny yellow African lilies. My simple homegrown backyard bouquet was all I had to offer.

“Go in the Strength You Have” (Judges 6:14)

Armed in the strength I have, I walk two doors down, gravel crunching underfoot. Nerve endings buzz and crackle, peripheral neuropathy causing my hands to go numb. I carefully grasp the glass jar with both hands.

The greatest gift I have is the gift of myself.

Ever since my chronic illness began, I have struggled with feelings of uselessness and inadequacy.I was hesitant to visit because I had nothing special to offer. I had no grand meal Just Me by Pixabayprepared, no cookies baked, not even a card. All I could offer was a canning jar backyard bouquet and myself. 

Ever joyful, Mrs. M was thrilled for the surprise visit and humble backyard bouquet. I thought all I had to offer was a humble backyard bouquet. While walking home, I realized I often overlook the greatest gift I have-the gift of myself.

“Goodness is the only investment that never fails.” –Henry David Thoreau

Don’t overlook the greatest gift you have, the gift of yourself.  How can you use what you already have to bless someone today?

This article originally posted on

*All Scripture is NIV from Bible Gateway*Images courtesy of Pixabay

© 2016 April Dawn White, All rights reserved

April Dawn White

April White is a pharmacist who dispenses spiritual medicine for a healthy soul. She is quick to say she doesn't have it all together but relies on the One who does. Drag your chair next to April's red chair and allow hope and encouragement to infuse your heart. April has a BS degree in biology from James Madison University and a Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Shenandoah University. Email April or visit her at

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  1. April, you are just too precious for words. I teared up as I pictured you making your way to your neighbor’s home with a gift of your heart. Thank you for reminding me of that scripture. I’m adding it to my computer top.

  2. I love this article, April. “Goodness is the only investment that never fails.” –Henry David Thoreau. Such powerful words and your embodiment of how goodness looks through actions is colored on the page of this story.

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