For Lent – Meditation II – Kiss Winter Good-bye!
I’ve been inside too long. I open the back door for the first time since last October and step outside. The snow melts. The tulips pop and the grass emerges green. Once again vibrant Spring greets me and I pause to soak it all in.
Gleefully I rip out the tree toppers from my planter boxes and throw them in the garbage.
When I was a child I knew spring was near when the time came in late February for Great-grandfather Fred (we called him ‘Daddy Fred’) to bring us an empty cottage cheese carton repurposed as a pot containing a planted hyacinth bulb.
All you saw at first was the dirt filled carton and an Elgin Furniture Store pencil stuck in the dirt so that when the hyacinth grew it would have something to lean against. I watched that dirt for days until one day a little tip of the plant peeked up through the soil. The hyacinth flower smelled so good! I still associate the musty smell of moist earth mixed with the aromatic fragrance of hyacinth with the start of spring.
The poet in Solomon’s Song says:
For lo, the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone.
The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of singing has come.
Next week we observe Holy Week at our little Anglican church. Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Saturday Easter Vigil, as well as Easter Day on Sunday. We pause to remember and reflect and wonder as the drama surrounding the Passion of Christ unfolds once again, Good Friday ironically does indeed prove to be ‘good’, and we affirm our Resurrection Hope in Christ. Like Peter, we affirm: “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Also we have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Reminds me of the powerful ‘winter/spring’ metaphor in C.S. Lewis’ Lion, Witch, and the Wardrobe. The Witch’s slave the Dwarf holds Edmund hostage and keeps yanking on the rope that binds him. But Lewis writes:
This didn’t prevent Edmund from seeing. Only five minutes later he noticed a dozen crocuses growing around the foot of an old tree—gold and purple and white.
In the land that at one time had been always Winter and never Christmas, a spring thaw emerges. The melting snow in Narnia’s springtime suggests personal transformation and the redemption of the whole human race is at hand.
The Apostle John in Revelation envisions our Redemption this way:
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away.
Hope Springs Eternal
Edmund’s crocuses will emerge
as snow melts in Narnia.
Winter to Spring.
Dark to Light.
Death to Life.
And I, too, will Rise.
Hallelujah! I will Rise!
© Barbara LaTondresse – 18 March 2016 – all rights reserved.
I Will Rise by Chris Tomlin
Text References from:
Lewis, Clive Staples. “The Chronicles Of Narnia : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive.” Internet Archive. Internet Archive, n.d. Web. 18 Mar. 2016.
John 6:68-69, Song of Solomon 2:11-12 and Revelation 21:4 from The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
Images courtesy of:
Altar images created by Linda Hammer and reshared courtesy of Church of the Cross, 201 9th Avenue North, Hopkins, MN 55343 in the following source: LaTondresse, Barbara. “Light a Candle for Hope.” Web log post. http://www.ofthecross.org/light-a-candle-for-hope/. Church of the Cross, 4 Dec. 2014. Web. 19 Feb. 2o16. Copyright © 2016 Church of the Cross.