Springtime and the Gospel

When I was little, my mom used to have a saying around this time of year. When the sun would start peeking in our kitchen windows, she would sing, “Spring has sprung! The grass has ris! I wonder where the birdies is!” Bad grammar, I know; maybe even a little nerdy. Either way, it drove my older sister absolutely crazy. Even to this day, Bethany will throw her fingers in her ears and La La La her way out of the kitchen when the mom feels the rhyme coming on.

Spring as a kid was simply delightful. In our childhood yard, we had three apple trees. When the baby blossoms began to bloom, I would climb those trees and inhale their sweet scent as deeply as humanly possible. And then I would do it again, trying to gather their scent even further into myself.  When I was six, I ripped eleven pairs of tights climbing those trees. It was that spring my mom relented and allowed me to be a tomboy.

Yes, spring was great as a kid. But today could have rivaled even the tree-climbing days. Today was the first day the windows could be rolled down the highway. It was the first day to wear sun glasses. Today, I broke out something other than boots and wore just a little less than the usual seventeen layers. Today the air felt soft and gentle; walking from building to building was drawn out, rather than hurried. And, let me just tell you, it was delightful.

Spring has routinely been long-awaited by me. You could even say there’s something sacred about it. I suppose, spring is sacred in that it is all about newness.

And there’s something about the apparent newness of spring, isn’t there? When you buy a new shirt and you want to put it on as soon as you get home; when your pen meets the first page of a new journal; when your eyes rest on the first line of a new book. We crave newness, don’t we? I want to suggest that we crave newness because we were created for newness.

And yet …

Our shirts fall apart and we need to buy new ones. The journal will fill. The book will end. And we are left needing newness again. Spring will come, the sun will warm us, tan us, and even burn us a little bit; then the leaves will turn, the air will cool, and once again the world will be quiet and white. And we will need newness. Again.

Sounds a little disheartening, doesn’t it?

The cyclical way of nature is

persistent

constant

relentless.

Oooh, but I came across this little gem today:

“The grass withers, and the flower falls,

but the word of the Lord remains forever.” (1 Peter 1:24)

Maybe it’s not so much about newness as it is about redemption. In springtime, the earth is redeemed – the deep muck of winter fade till their memories and the little patches of snow will eventually be replaced by delightfully pesky dandelions. And though the ground will welcome the and muck and the cold once again, we are assured that once again, someday, spring will come again.

How much more faithful is His Word.

His Word is

Persistent

Constant

Relentless.

Can you remember the times His Word has held you? Those nights you laid awake, gripped with doubt; the moments of frustrated despair at the doctor’s report; the discontent when the answers are unclear… His Word was as consistent as the seasons, as predictable as the spring.

Roll those windows down. Springtime is here.

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