The name Einstein has become synonymous with the word genius, yet if you asked young Albert's classmates, teachers, or bosses they would have never described him as such. History informs us that Albert Einstein didn't speak until he was four years old and did not read until he was eleven. This caused his teachers and parents to believe that he was mentally handicapped early on. As a teen he didn't score high enough on the general portion on the exam to be admitted to the university; however, he excelled in physics and mathematics. (Isn't it amazing that some of us can't conquer the basic/general things in life but excel in the seemingly difficult? I digress...) Eventually, Einstein enrolled in the university and graduated; however, for two years he struggled to find a job until he eventually found entry level work in the Swiss patent office evaluating machine patents. After two years at the patent office he was overlooked for a promotion until he "fully mastered machine technology." Even though his boss thought that he did not understand the science under his charge, Einstein went on to become one of the smartest individuals in world history. He earned a Nobel Prize and changed the face of modern physics with ideas, thoughts, and work that are still highly regarded and respected decades after his death. To that end, I am proud to say that Albert Einstein is a dandelion the rest of us who have been considered "weeds" can look up to. Sometimes we let life and all of life's "stuff" keep us from achieving greatness. Other people can hurt your feelings, talk about you, judge you, fire you, laugh at you, label you, and shun you, but YOU are the only one who can make YOU give up on something. Sometimes life makes us want to give up; however, If we really believe in something we have to fight to keep trying. Dandelions are awesome because they grow, flourish, and bloom even though people don't want them around. We must be able to do the same- grow even when people don't like us. We have to grow even when it's difficult. We have to grow and be the people we are called to be no matter what others say or think. I'm a proud dandelion! - Rev. Derek
I love dandelions; however, our culture calls dandelions weeds. Each spring they infiltrate our lawns, parks, and sidewalk cracks and people do not want to see them grow among their grass. Dandelions are plucked, cut, or poisoned from plush green areas day in and day out. I identify with dandelions so much that I lovingly call myself a dandelion. Some people don't want me in their lives, churches, or inner circles. I regularly encounter people who consider me a weed constantly spreading that which they do not understand or like all over "lawns" that they have worked and invested in. What about you? Have you ever felt like a weed? Have you ever thought that everyone around you was a rose or tulip- beautiful and desirable yet everyone treated you like a weed, a burden or a problem? Have you ever believed that other people do not want you around? Have you ever felt like some people or situations are actually trying to annihilate you? Perhaps you also identify with dandelions. What most of us fail to realize is that there is value in being a dandelion. Just because people do not know, understand, or appreciate your value does not mean that you are worthless. Dandelions may be weeds to many people but did you know that they are used in creating medicines to heal the liver, gallbladder, pancreas, spleen, intestines, and the skin. Moreover, dandelion tea and coffee is a delicacy in many countries. What some people call a weed or a problem others call a delicacy and a cure. WOW! Please don't allow other people to determine your value; you are valuable no matter what others say. Know your own worth! Often times life is like an item on the Antiques Roadshow. Sometimes people bring in something that they find in the trash or buy for $5 at a yard sale only to discover that it is worth thousands of dollars. In other words, sometimes we are in the presence of something valuable yet because of our own ignorance or prejudice we never even realize it. So the next time you plan your attack against the "weeds" in your life consider their true value. Love Wins! - Rev. Derek
A weed/plant growing where it is not wanted; however, dandelions have dozens of beneficial medicinal uses. This page offers inspiration to those of us who are proud dandelions- at times others may see us as unwanted, yet we understand and recognize our value and grow anyway!