Signs of Spring

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The past week of warm weather has melted away the last patches of snow and ice. The bees are getting active again, and the robins have returned and are busily looking for food. There are signs of new life springing up all around. It is Spring, but it is also coming up on Easter – the church’s celebration of new life, of a new covenant. All about us are the blessings of God swelling like the buds on the trees. If we open ourselves, we can find Him ready to blossom in our hearts.

With modern transportation and supermarkets, we don’t feel the lean times of winter the way our ancestors did. During the winter, fresh produce was impossible to find. Seeds for spring planting were carefully horded, despite the hungry times. The last few weeks leant themselves to fasting and sacrifice – go hungry now and don’t eat the seeds saved for spring planting. A person would be rewarded for their self-control and discipline by bountiful crops. It was a good foundation for Lenten philosophy. As winter waned and days lengthened, the chickens began laying again. The egg was a natural symbol of spring. It stood for rebirth and the coming Easter Season. Last year a pair of robins nested in plain sight in our storage building. The small blue eggs were warmed by the mother – just as our hearts are warmed by Mary to make us ready for the Son. In due time the eggs hatched. It was fascinating to watch the baby birds greet the parents with mouths gaping open, hungry for food. My soul should be like that – gaping open with hunger, begging for the Holy Spirit to fill me with the Word of God. Certainly this period of Lent has helped to create in me that hunger for God’s love. I crave the nourishment offered in the Eucharist and in His Holy Word.

With spring in the air, we are laying out our garden plans and starting seeds for transplanting. Jesus lived close to the earth. He understood the people who made their living from tending the sheep, fishing, and farming. It isn’t a surprise that he would use the natural elements to explain God’s mysteries to them. Even those of who are not farmers can relate to the analogy of a grain of wheat falling to the ground and dying before it sprouts and produces more grain. God’s love has been planted in our hearts. Let the growing begin!

Look about. Signs of spring surround us, but so does God’s everlasting love. What signs can you find? Seek them out. Ask and it shall be given. Open your soul wide to receive His goodness.

Linda Crowley