A Bouquet of People

a white pitcher on a table outdoors holds a tangle of pink, white, and gold wildflowers

Let us give thanks for a bouquet of people.
We give thanks for children. Like tulips and iris, they multiply around us, making the world ever more filled with color, beauty, and new life. May we bless them as they replant themselves ever further from us, knowing that they need their own space to grow into.

We give thanks for generous friends, as constant in bloom as echinacea and whose gifts lift up our body and spirit.

We give thanks for feisty friends as indomitable as geraniums,
and for continuous friends, who, like bittersweet and ivy,
hold on and never let go…and can never be gotten rid of.

For crotchety friends, as prickly as rosebushes; their beauty a secret that is only discovered through careful gardening.
For surprising friends, who at first glance seem dour and then blossom into joy as quickly as forsythia.

For funny friends, silly as snapdragons,
And serious friends, complex as chrysanthemums.

For comfortable friends, their gentle presence as soothing as the sweet smell of lilacs.
For stormy weather friends, who stand by us in hard times, like lily of the valley that cannot be deterred by shade or shadow.

For old friends, nodding like sunflowers in the evening-time
And young friends coming on fast as phlox.

For friends as unpretentious as dogwood,
as persistent as pachysandra,
as steadfast as azalea,
and who, like snowdrops, can be counted on to see you through the winter and remind you that spring always comes.

For loving friends, who wind around us like wisteria and embrace us, despite our blights, wilts, and witherings,
And, finally, for forget-me-not friends, gone but never forgotten. Their beauty lives on in our memories and hearts.

For this bouquet of people, who brighten our lives each in their own way, we give thanks.

Note: this prayer is modeled after a well-known and much-cherished prayer by the late Rev. Max Coots.