I love gardening, and many times as I'm out working in the garden, spiritual applications from the Bible come to my mind such as the parable of the sower, and how weeds growing up remind me of the seriousness of sins that can spread so easily and choke out the good growth in peoples lives. Also, as I'm working on pruning our bushes and trees, seeing the effect of the cuts helping stimulate the plants to grow even better, make me realize how often the Lord uses hurtful things in our lives that seem like "cutting back" and harmful things at the time, but in the end He uses it to cause us to grow in grace more. So, when I came across this information about plants, it amazed me and once again reminded me of more spiritual lessons we can observe from God's creation.
This is what I found:
Plants do most of their growing at night. The absence of light actually stimulates plants to grow fastest in the darkness. Actually, the major part of the cell division and growth in plants is done at night. So we can easily conclude that plants need darkness as much as they need sunlight to grow. Plant phytochromes detect darkness, encouraging growth hormone production, causing the plant to elongate in search of light. The same process helps plants orientate their foliage to light and helps seedlings stretch in search of light.
Roots of most plants also grow at night. The food prepared in the form of glucose is utilized at night for cell division. Not only the roots, but also stems, flowers, and fruits grow at night. This is the time when the accumulation of food and water is actually done.
While plants capture energy during the day, the synthesis of new tissue is often better accomplished at night, because the conditions then allow avoidance of heat stress and water loss. In plants using CAM photosynthesis, the stomata in the leaves are shut during the day to reduce evapotranspiration, but are opened at night to collect CO2, and carbon fixation occurs then.
If you put plants in light for whole 24 hours then they will eventually die. Likewise, if you put your plants in complete darkness for long, they will lose chlorophyll and hence die. So both sunlight and darkness are required for plants to grow healthy. Some plants need more light, while others need more shade.
These things reminded me and gave me comfort in times of my own struggles, that the Lord knows exactly what each one of us needs...sometimes seasons of darkness, sometimes seasons of light and joy. It's all for our growth and our good.
"Who is among you that feareth the LORD, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the LORD, and stay upon his God."
"He really cares about us in our sufferings. The greatest blessing in this world is to know God, and to have a knowing relationship of Him. You can't know Him fully without suffering. You can't know Him truly as the God of all comfort, without the excruciating pain of tribulations and pressures and trials and troubles. There is no other road to knowing Him in this way, than the road of pressure and suffering and trials."
But the God of all grace, Who hath called us unto His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered awhile, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. To Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
-1 Peter 5:10-11