Rose Of All Roses

Rose Of All Roses My Father was a gardener by trade in England by trade. His father was also a gardener, and could be seen selling his vegetables to neighbours throughout the summer months and into the fall. I am not sure if my father’s dad had gone to school to become a gardener but my father did. Upon his graduation from school his was given three books (name them). It was through the selling of the veggies that my dad met my mom. He would bring vegetables to the home in which she lived with her parents. He was affectionately called the “tomato boy”by my grandmother.

They decided shortly after getting married to emigrate to Canada to start a new life and to raise children in what they thought would be a better life. In May of 1960 they left from the Port of Liverpool on the Corinthia,. bound for a new life in Canada. They journey took them 8 days, as they had to travel further south to avoid iceburgs that were making their way south. The journey by boat ended in Montreal. From there they travelled by train to their final destination of Brampton, Ontario, Canada, ready to embark on a new life in a new country. Gardening in Canada had many challenges, as the winters are harsh and long. Over the next 40 years many changes occurred in their lives. They had two children a girl and a boy. They made a few moves until finally settling in Barrie, Ontario. Careers, changes and challenges were many for the both of them, but the one thing that did remain constant was the love of gardening.

We bought our first home eight years ago, and being in a new area, it has taken time to get the gardens in place. One of the last gardens to be done was the one that had been dug when we moved in. I finally decided that I wanted to try my hand at roses. I marked the garden out, and it was decided that I had room for four bushes in the chosen area. I picked one red, one pink, one yellow, and one orange, and after planting, I awaited their growth. Three of them began to grow quite quickly; one showed no signs of life at all. I waited and watched. One by one, the others began to show leaves and grow taller. My dad, came over to have a look, and he said that I would probably have to replace that one. I told my husband -- who then went and prayed for this plant. Within a few days, it began to show signs of life. As buds began to appear on the others, the one was still struggling. Finally, leaves began to appear. As the roses bloomed, it soon became apparent that the lagging bush was the red one.

All summer, we enjoyed a tremendous showing of roses, three of the bushes growing to about three feet. Yet, the one hugging the ground produced many red flowers, but it was small in comparison to the others.

In late August, my dad passed away, and for a few hectic days, I had not noticed the roses. When I did, I noticed that the red one was not flowering. I prayed that I would have a rose to take to my dad's memorial service four days later. At the time, I did not pray for a particular colour. When the morning of the day of the memorial service came, the only rose bush of the four that was flowering was the red one.

God does hear and answer our prayers. Though my prayer at first may have been for more time with my dad, that was not in God's plan. God did hear my prayer for the rose, and gave me the greatest gift I could have had for that day. I have also been able to testify of God's goodness and greatness in our lives to many of our unsaved family members. Praise be to God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. How reassuring it is that God is always there for us in all situations.