Late last week I finally went out to the front yard and dead-headed the hydrangeas. The gorgeous blooms from a couple of weeks ago had faded and drooped. The bushes looked tired, laden with the clusters of paled and slightly-brown flowers at their base. I clipped and clipped, filling an entire trash can. When I was finished I had a full trash can full of fading beauty.
It was hard not to be overcome with the metaphor: to make room for new blooms, I had to cut way back on the existing ones. The existing ones, which were not at their peak anymore but were still very beautiful. I had to go in and clear space. Clear out what was beginning to fade in order to allow for what was not yet visible.
Isn’t that what we all have to do, all the time? It takes faith, doesn’t it, to cut away what we know is good, even though we understand that it is past its prime, in favor of what we cannot yet see? And yet we must. What is coming is beautiful. I know it is.