My husband is from Texas. I never thought I’d marry a Texan, being a Northern girl, but I’ve become quite fond of the state–it has abundant sunshine, no state income tax, and in-laws that I love dearly. And although I am grateful for my community and family here in Illinois, there is always a moment in the middle of, say, January, when I start watching the weather report for Texas and I wonder, again, why we live in the cold.
The sunlight fades so rapidly in the winter that I am constantly shocked. It is like losing my keys every day of the week at 4 pm–I’m sure I just misplaced the sunlight, or just set it down here, or just forgot it in my purse over there. But no. The grayness is perpetual. And after December passes, I have moments where I feel like a disgruntled Narnian: always winter, never Christmas.
But then comes May. And I remember that Illinois has redeeming qualities. Because there is nothing–nothing–like the transformation that occurs after a difficult winter.
It is an awakening.
I stop flinching every time I open the front door. I stop waking up in pale light. I stop closing the blinds. I stop feeling slightly sad.
Spring. Both a noun and a verb–a delightful combination in a word. And it means both. Spring, as a beloved season, is lush and full and beautiful and hopeful. And it is springing–up, up, up through the earth that has been wetted with a trillion flakes of snow. There is life that has been hiding there, waiting. There are blossoms that have been waiting in seeds, colors that have been waiting in the darkness. There is a breath that has been held, and now the earth is exhaling.
And now all becomes visible. All of the hidden colors and seeds and life come bursting through the earth to declare a new season. To declare a new start. To declare that winter is not the end. To declare a good God who does not let death have the last word. And the disgruntled Narnian in me starts remembering that Aslan is on the move.
This is why Spring matters to me–it reminds me that even the things that look the deadest and most withered can be revived. That earth that has been hardened by ice so think no saw could cut it through–that same earth will become tender with life. The places in my heart that feel dead, or tired, or gray, or just sad–they can be made new. In Christ, they will be made new.
Spring is here. And I am thankful to live in a place where the extremes of the seasons on this swirling earth remind me of a greater Story that is swirling around me.
*This is a Writing Wednesdays post! The prompt for this week: Take a word–like “spring”–that has more than one meaning, and write about ways that those meanings overlap and connect. And, as always, I would love for you to leave a comment linking to your favorite piece of writing from your own blog, or to a response to this prompt!