People Change

People change, you know.

I have never been interested in gardening. Too busy. Too many people in my house for flower growing. Too little time. All these homeowner years, I have only maintained my flowerbeds by plopping some annual color in the ground that faithfully turned brown by mid-July.

Then something happened a while back. I decided that I really like roses.

Everyone said, “Don’t think about roses, they’re too hard.” But. But. But. But my heart had changed it’s mind. Roses had become beautiful to me, something like the sweet, simple, complex, grandeur of God in a flower. I wanted to try, just one time, to grow a something beautiful, so I planted roses.

Actually, I bought roses (the kind that were half-dead, on sale, at the back of Walmart so if they died I had only wasted five bucks), read about pruning and feeding, then stood smiling while Scott dug a hole in the ground where we planted all my rose-growing hope.

Here is what I found in my backyard this morning . . . mid-July.

I have a feeling the months of this rose lesson is intended for something deeper inside of me. People can change. What has long gone unnoticed can finally, one day, be seen. Appreciated. Loved.

I am changing. And I hear the Lord whisper . . . Open your eyes wider. You’ve missed so much. I have greater things to show you.

Are you changing too?



  1. Katie Reagan November 28, 2012 at 5:35 pm - Reply

    Just now finding your blog. Ironic that the first post I read is about roses. The flower has become very symbolic to me too. Roses have changed my life too; “65 roses”(Cystic Fibrosis) has changed my life. Cysitc Fibrosis is the genetic terminal illness my 34 year old husband died of in April 2011 leaving me a widow with 2 small children. I wanted to say thank you so much for writing 52 Things Kids Need From a Mom, and especially “My Single Mom Life”. You gave me so much encouragement and articulated thoughts and feelings I had not been able to formulate in to words. Since reading, “Roses In December”, I now look for other kinds of “roses”; good that God brings out of our painful circumstance:The other young widows and single moms God has brought me to minister to; Seeing the faces of men walk through the door of our church whom my husband prayed for many years to come to know the Lord! And the idea birthed at his funeral to start a backpack ministry to feed hungry school children over the weekend. Thank you for using your gift of writing to minister to me and my children!

  2. Patricia Hutchinson October 10, 2012 at 10:26 pm - Reply

    I am studying “When wallflowers Dance” in our Wednesday morning Bible study. I am so inspired by your testimony that several of us plan on visiting you in Gulfport in November!!!! Hope to see you in person soon!

  3. Phyllis Kester September 13, 2012 at 9:07 am - Reply

    Hi Angela, through your presentation at LU my very discerning husband found your website and passed this story on to me because he could see our kindred spirits. I loved your story about the roses and want to share one of mine regarding my love of yellow pansies. It’s called “Persistence in the dirt” and can be found at Hope you enjoy mine as much as I enjoyed your.

  4. yvette morris August 9, 2012 at 11:48 pm - Reply

    Hi Angela, I too saw you on Life Today. I am at a phase in my life that i can relate to what you are saying about your roses.I have been a widow for about 6 yrs. now and have a girl 10 and a boy 8 yrs. young. i finally feel like having color in my wardrobe again and wearing jewelry again. God is telling me to dream big again and that nothing is too hard for him. Good for you to plant your roses even when others weren’t sure you would have success but you knew on the inside that you would. My Pastor used to tell me that roses will bloom again in my life….. I guess I better go to the back rack of walmart and look for the $5 rose bushes lol.

  5. LT August 9, 2012 at 10:24 pm - Reply

    greater things are yet to come, it’s an eternally hopeful thought I carry close to my heart. God can continually challenge and shepherd us to greater things to accomplish His work here on earth, be bold, follow Him, go and do greater things! Then, the challenge becomes a promise, soothing and peaceful, for greater things will come after this life to all who accept Him. What joy and inspiration this little phrase has brought me, Chris Tomlin’s song captures it so well. Thanks for your rich gift of ministry Angela.

  6. Caitlin August 8, 2012 at 1:22 am - Reply

    I just saw you on James Robinson which I have never seen before but piked at random. It is 1 am in the morning and I have spent the last few hours arguing with my husband about trivial matters. Hearing your description of Beverly and how I am not invisible but rather constantly in the presence of God filled my heart with joy. Thank you for that important reminder and Praise God for his timing!

  7. Cheree Walts August 3, 2012 at 11:44 pm - Reply

    I saw the show on LifeToday today and was so moved by the Spirit of God that manifested in my home while you were speaking, it was incredible and it brought me to tears. Not sure what God did in me yet, but I know he was at work through your soft gentle voice. You have such an anointing in the way you speak. I was overwhelmed. I am looking for the books to purchase now. Look forward to getting them and reading. I know there is something specifically for me that God wants to do in me. God bless you mightily.

  8. Elize Cronje August 2, 2012 at 2:38 am - Reply

    Hi I would like Angela’s email adres

    Kind regards

    Elize Cronje
    South Africa

  9. Marie July 31, 2012 at 1:48 am - Reply

    Angela, I saw you just moments ago on the Life Today program with James Robison. Your gentle spirit and loving kindness encouraged me to take note of your website that was shown on the screen, and I felt called at 1:30 in the morning to get online to say how much I enjoyed your discussion with James. The story of Beverly, your red-haired cleaning lady, was very inspiring. And now, I have enjoyed this sweet story about planting roses that were half dead, and now they are growing with beauty and hope for even more blossoms in next year’s growing season. Thank you for sharing your time on Life Today. Your words have given me something on which to reflect for my own writings.

  10. Kristi July 30, 2012 at 2:47 pm - Reply

    I saw you this morning on James Robison’s show, I don’t usually sit so long that I watch the whole show, but the Lord you know. He had that story to tell me about Beverly. I am so blessed to know that I am not the only redhead who feels and sees her Lord so close that people think you’re crazy, not me, I am as you say His beautiful daughter. Thank you for your own courage and dedication when the devil tried his best to lead you away. God Bless you, I’ve never read your books but today I will buy them and read.Do you ever come to Calif?

  11. Joyce Ponder July 30, 2012 at 12:30 pm - Reply

    I saw you you on TV this morning, too, and loved the story about Beverly. I have been unfamiliar with your ministry but will start paying more attention! God bless all that you do.

  12. Ann Simmons July 30, 2012 at 9:52 am - Reply

    I saw you on TV this morning and was so intrigued and motivated by your testimony regarding your cleaning lady! I am committing to “spitting on the devil” each and every day! What an inspiration – thank you so much for sharing that! Ann Simmons

  13. Jeanna Evans July 17, 2012 at 8:32 pm - Reply

    Thank you for sharing this Angela. I am living proof that people can change – God is doing this deep work in me and I am so thankful. It’s not an easy journey, but He is giving me peace to walk through it as I trust in Him and His love for me. When I read your blog, I thought about the song by Mandisa “Say Goodbye”. Love the words to the first verse especially:

    To the voice to the liar in the mirror
    Sayin you can’t ever change
    To the guilt that’s sittin on your shoulder
    Always keepin you locked in chains
    To the past that you can’t undo
    To the pain that you’re walkin through
    To the small and the big mistakes
    This is what love wants to say
    Say goodbye to the one you used to be

    I have said goodbye to the old me and I’m learning to embrace the new me and begin to see myself the way He sees me – beautiful.

    God is so faithful!

  14. robin wutke July 17, 2012 at 2:19 pm - Reply

    Love lessons learned…change must happen if we are to finally see the beauty God reveals. He makes new things from dead, Just like your roses, our old nature must die so we can be recreated to be like Jesus….seeing helps us believe it.

  15. Laura Ann Wake July 17, 2012 at 10:45 am - Reply

    I love roses also! And was always told how hard they are….never listened…my dad grew roses and I “helped pick out the new ones” as a little girl….so now I have a beautiful rose garden…and when someone asks how I do it…I say…”I planted them and God grows them….”

  16. Jackie Zofkie July 17, 2012 at 10:41 am - Reply

    We are all growing – if we allow ourselves to be filled with His spirit. I love the reference to roses…especially since they have thorns…they are beautiful flowers with thorns. Just like the wounds we have from life situations…they can be a part of the beautiful rose unfolding as we bloom in His word and His will. Thanks Angela for sharing!

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