A Spring Reflection

  Finally, I get to enjoy my first “real” spring morning of the year.  A couple of weeks ago, I thought spring was ushered in.  We saw daffodils and other early spring blooms.  The robins have appeared.  I quickly ordered new flip-flops and shorts for the kids.  Baseball practices began.  We were given some beautifully warm afternoons, unaware of the upcoming weeks of wind and rain.  Then the temperatures took a dive.  Winter was back.  I’ve been afraid of losing my beautiful tulips, cherry blossoms, and hyacinths before they could even be enjoyed.  The wind kept blowing, and the clouds kept rolling in. Finally, I retrieved my porch cushions from the storage shed.  My first real spring morning.  Upon a quick inventory, I am thrilled to see most of my flowers have survived the heavy wind and rain…strong enough to bend, as the song goes.  My kids are picking their first dandelion bouquets of the year. There’s been a lot of tragic news recently—the earthquake/tsunami in Japan, our dog had to be put down, media drama, marriages ending, even a heartbreaking suicide in our town…death and winter everywhere.  I’ve been thinking a lot about how the world’s values and musings are at odds with the believer’s great call and destiny.  I’ve been thinking about how badly I fail in my opportunities to show Christ’s love to others.  Just like the spring turning back to winter, I get caught up in this world’s priorities and methods.  Sometimes it’s just plain discouraging—the wind keeps blowing hard, and the coldness doesn’t let up. The new life and warmth of spring is such a beautiful reminder of the love of God in Christ.  My trees surely looked dead all winter, but now their life is revealed.  My flowers were out of sight, underground, but have broken through, weathered the storm, and are blooming radiantly.  God loves us through it all and is working in us.  We can sing through trials, like the robins in the storm. We suffer.  There is loss.  But we will never lose the love God has set on us in Christ.  It is more real than anything else.  It is sure.  Christ has propitiated God’s wrath toward my sin—on an actual day in time—and I am blessed with His righteousness and all the benefits that go with it.  I can love because I have TRUE love, a love that endures.  Trials and suffering drive me to His love, and prove His love.  God is the perfect Father, who is able.  Christ is the perfect husband, who sacrificed all in humiliation, life itself, for me—a harlot.  He is making me pure.  Lord, I pray that in gratitude I can take this love and give it to my husband—that the winters will prove my love.  Enable me with Your steadfastness to live out my calling, knowing that nothing can separate me from You.  My destiny is to become like Christ!  That is how You will be glorified.  I do not feel adequate to speak of such beauty and love.  Help me to bring forth my fruit in season, to be like a tree, planted by the rivers of water, that my leaves will never wither (Ps. 1:3).