Indigo & Violet (Pansy)

Posted on: January 23, 2010

In the midst of winter, this flower’s vivid colour is like an injection of vitality.  Pansies also appeal to the sense of touch, as their petals are beautifully velvety and soft.

A few years ago, browsing in a second-hand ‘Language of Flowers’ book, I learnt that pansy means ‘a thought’.  Then the penny dropped.  It must be from the name – ‘thought’  in French is ‘pensee’.   I wondered why the French gave this flower that meaningful name.  Maybe (I was thinking, today) it’s because the flowers look like little faces – each one wearing a pensive expression.  Just now I had a fresh look at this photo (above) with this in mind – and concluded that they certainly don’t seem to be smiling!

Sometimes a smile is what we need.  Other times, knowing that we are in someone’s thoughts, in a prolonged sort of way, is more valuable.   Come to think of it, generally speaking I would rather be thought about, than be smiled at by someone, if I had to choose.  (A smile can be just a quick flash of someone’s good intent towards you!  Or it can just reflect their passing state of mind!)  And perhaps there’s nothing people desire more than that others should take an interest in their thoughts.  Psalm 139 (in the Old Testament) says ‘You understand my thought afar off’ (verse 2).  My pastor has suggested that our quiet times go well when we allow the Holy Spirit to walk among our thoughts. 

I’m so glad God places such a high value on our thoughts.  The downside is that we can fall into sin just by thinking something.  But the upside is that we can please God and give Him great delight, through the way we direct the flow of thoughts inside our heads – a pattern we create unique to each one of us, and unique to each ‘thinking occasion’.

Indigo & Violet Riddle

At summer’s end, I clothe the land,
Sometimes my roughness tears your hasty hand,
I am not water, yet you wade in me,
I ripple in the wild wind – yet I am not the sea.

[If you would like to receive the answer – or have your guess confirmed as the correct answer! – email me on rschown@yahoo.co.uk.]


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  • None
  • Carole: Beautiful!
  • Amy: Sounds like a beautiful color and dress. And I would love to see a picture of that tree! I do love trees of all kinds, and you make some great points
  • Amy: What a beautiful poem or song to God, love it! We're exciting to see spring here up in the northeast after a long, cold, snowy winter! Blessings, A


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