to sleep awhile. “ Grow tall and beau tiful and blossom for sad Mrs. Gregg.” Never were brown lily bulbs tended more carefully, nor watched with more love and interest. All the while, too, as they slept in the dark closet, and even after they were brought out to the light, Mrs. Brown told Mary Louise the loveliest stories of God’s plan in changing ugly brown bulbs into the most beautiful of flowers. Never had Mary Louise so understood the meaning of the resurrection. Surely He who could bring about such a beautiful transformation would do more for those who were His own children, for whom the Lord Jesus died.
whole house. “Now they are ready, Mother, ready to go on their missionary journey,” said Mary Louise, and Mrs. Brown knew that the little girl was right. The daintiest, prettiest card was chosen, and Mary Louise wrote in her very best writing: “ For Mrs. Gregg, with love from Mary Louise Brown.” Then, at Mrs. Brown’s suggestion, she copied the lovely verse: “ I am the resurrection, and the life : he that be- lieveth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live.” After special’ prayer for the mis sionary journey, the beautiful lilies were soon carried over to Mrs. Gregg’s porch, right near the milk bottles, which stood not far from the large door. How long the lilies stayed there no one knew, but the next morning they were gone. Mary Louise knew, for she walked just far enough down the street to See. All that took place in the big house the morning the lilies were discov ered, no one ever knew—but the lilies knew.—and I think they might have heard Mrs. Gregg speaking right out loud between sobs of joy. “ Though -— he were dead — yet — shall—he live—and I shall see them again—my own dear John and Baby Marie — changed into His likeness,, more beautiful than the fairest lily.” As for Mary Louise and her moth er, they knew that the Lord would speak through His Word and the mis sionary lilies. And this was how it, came about that Mrs. Gregg was in church on Easter Sunday, sitting close to Mrs. Brown and Mary Louise. The shades in the old home were up that day, and the door ajar, folk said, but best of all, the door of Mrs. Gregg’s heart had been opened wide, and resurrec tion hope through faith in her Sav iour’s promise had come in to stay. The missionary lilies had accom plished their mission.
By Martha S. Hooker M RS. GREGG lived at the far end of the street in a large old-fashioned house, set some what back from the roadway. Folk would love to have visited on the spa cious old veranda or lingered under the shady trees, but it was all so cheerless. The doors were always closed and the shades drawn, though every one knew that Mrs. Gregg was at home. Visitors were just not wel come. Mrs. Gregg herself didn’t scatter much cheer. She always wore a black dress in keeping with her sad face, and was seldom seen by her neigh bors. Mary Louise Brown and her mother lived on the same street and often walked past where Mrs. Gregg lived. These two were great chums, al though Mary Louise was only seven. “Mother, I wonder why Mrs. Gregg never even comes to church?” Mary Louise asked her mother one day as they walked by the big house and tried to look beyond the closed win dows for a glimpse of the sad lady. “ I do wish she would come, dear. We will have to ask our Heavenly Father to find a way.” That night as Mrs. Brown and Mary Louise had their prayer time, a special request was made for Mrs. Gregg. “ Please, dear Heavenly Father, make Mrs. Gregg want to go to Your house,” Mary Louise prayed. A few days later, Mrs. Brown and her little girl were busy planting lily bulbs. “ We must have lilies for Easter,” Mrs. Brown said. In the midst of the planting of the brown ugly bulbs, Mary Louise’s face suddenly shone with joy as she came to her mother with a plan: “ Mother, may I plant some bulbs ‘special’ for Mrs. Gregg?” “Why, indeed you may! I believe our Heavenly Father Himself gave you this lovely idea.” So the prettiest bowl was chosen, and five brown bulbs were placed care fully and prayerfully within. “ You are to be missionary lilies, little brown bulbs,” said Mary Louise as she put them away in a dark closet Page Sixteen
Every day there was something new to discover about the little brown bulbs—first a tiny green shoot, then the tall, beautiful blades, until the brown ugly bulbs were quite forgot ten. So Mary Louise and her mother prayed and watched and tended, and the lily plants grew and grew. The days quickly passed, and Easter was near. Would there be blossoms? Mary Louise never doubted, for were not her bulbs to be missionary lilies ? And her faith was rewarded for, during the week before Easter, she found the first tiny bud. This discovery caused a real time of rejoicing in the Brown household. “ I knew my missionary plant would bloom,” Mary Louise said over and over. Soon other buds appeared and Mary Louise’s heart fairly sang for joy. Of course, the buds quickly opened—the ugly brown bulbs had been changed into the most beautiful lilies, shed ding their fragrance throughout the
T H E K I N G ’ S B U S I N E S S
Made with FlippingBook flipbook maker