If you were to ask our six and seven year old girls what their favorite story is, they would probably say “A Basket Of Flowers,” by Christopher Von Schmid.
They have listened to Lamplighter Theatre’s recording of this classic story from the early 1800s dozens of times and nearly have it memorized. I hope the truths within the story will stick with them for their entire lives.
Most people today believe in some version of Karma, a concept originating from Eastern religions, like Hinduism and Buddhism, which embraces a sort of ’cause and effect’ aspect: do good and good things will happen to you; do bad and bad things will happen to you.
This idea has crept into the church, too, and is widely taught by those who have embraced the false, health and wealth gospel. If you just increase your giving, have greater faith, or spend more time praying for the things we really want, God will certainly come through, prosper all our endeavors, and give us the desire of our hearts.
It’s an ideology that cheapens God’s grace. Jesus’ sacrifice for the remission of our sin becomes nearly obsolete, since life becomes all about us and our personal pleasure and success, instead of God’s glory.
When “life happens,” and people find themselves lacking material gain, miserable, sick and lonely, despite emptying themselves of all their resources, they feel duped by a so-called Christianity, that never really had anything to do with Christ and what He came to do at all.
God never promised an easy life of wealth and prosperity to those who trust in Him for their salvation. Instead, He tells us that this life is a vale of tears, and to expect injustice, persecution, and suffering for His sake (Romans 8:17; Philippians 3:10; 1 Peter 2:20)
A Basket Of Flowers is a deeply moving story that illustrates what it means to remain faithful to God, even in the midst of great trials, like being falsely accused and suffering persecution for crimes you didn’t commit.
The main character in the story is a young girl named Mary. Her gardener father, James, teaches her principles of godliness using flowers as object lessons. It is a good thing to know doctrine in theory, but it’s quite another to put it into practice, especially at an enormous penalty to self.
Mary is falsely accused of theft, and circumstantial evidence seems to secure the case against her. It is not until she has greatly suffered through insurmountable obstacles that evidence is finally discovered to vindicate her.
With great skill and tenderness, Christoph Von Schmid weaves the nature of man, and the sweet humility of a new creation in Christ throughout the story. The reward of Mary’s integrity in spite of immense suffering is not one you will find touted by the prosperity gospel; her reward is growing in nearness to God, which is far, far better.
This story is packed with Scriptural truths and an absolute treasure for young and old alike.
I’d recommend it as a family read aloud, or for young ladies.
You can buy the paperback version of A Basket of Flowers, here, or the audiobook, here.