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Consider the Lilies


By Jene Hedden

Most days I am proud to be a member of that generation known affectionately as the Baby Boomers. 

The Boomer generation was born after World War 2, between 1946 until 1964, to fathers coming home from war anxious to get on with living instead of dying. There were so many of us that by the fifties and sixties elementary and high schools all around the country were too small to accommodate us.

Our generation changed society with Rock and Roll in the 1950’s even though our parents said it would never last. Then in the 1960’s we rebelled against almost everything our parents embraced.  When our generation was sent off to an unpopular Asian conflict, our soldiers came home with shattered dreams to the protests of their fellow Americans.  Some were even spat upon. That was not our finest hour.

In subsequent years, we started careers and built homes for our families and pets. We worked hard and increased our per-capita income to new highs. We bought our way through the next forty years.

Now, as the generation that became the wealthiest ever in U.S. history is beginning to retire in great numbers, we are faced with the unenviable challenge of looking inward and asking, “What’s next?”. I hope most of us have done our homework and thought about career replacement and setting new goals in areas such as volunteerism, hobbies, travel and grand-parenting.

Grand-parenting?  When I speak of grand-parenting as a goal for our post-retirement years, I'm not talking about babysitting, taking the grandkids on vacation or heading out for a Saturday outing to the zoo...although spending fun time with them is important.  Rather, I am speaking of passing along the gems of knowledge we have acquired in our many years of life so they can live happy, healthy lives. I am speaking of passing on our wisdom.

We need to share what we know about how to be trustworthy, how to trust others and who to trust. We need to show them what true love is and how to know when it is real. We need to pass on tips for how to avoid peer pressure and what it means to do the right thing. We need to tell them how to find and keep true friends for a lifetime. We need to be examples of good citizenship and patriotism.  And most important, we need to model for them a Godly life, the importance of a personal relationship with God and how to serve Him.  I'm sure you know the list of which I speak.

One day I was walking in my garden and looking at the lily beds that reside there.  Some of those lilies are pictured in the photos above.

The blossoms were fully open, and I noticed the bright pollen on all the anthers of the blossoms. The pollen contains the genetic code in the DNA of the lily and when carried by some unknowing insect to the pistil of another one, pollinates it. And…bingo! The genetic code is passed from one generation to another along with the critical information needed for survival. Life continues for that specie of lily. And so it goes, generation after generation. Lily after lily.

 My intention here is not to present a biology lesson in the birds and the bees. Rather, I find it worthwhile to pause and consider what we Boomers are passing along to our grandchildren.  Those moments when we can pass vital information to our grandkids are so precious and so fleeting.  They grow up so fast. So we should take a lesson from the bees and butterflies buzzing and fluttering from blossom to blossom on a bright summer day. We should stop and consider the lilies...and make every precious moment with our grandchildren count.


Edited by Paula Moore Hurtt