Monday, March 21, 2011

The Hope of Spring

The hope of spring:  it amazes me each year.

Saturday morning, as I promised myself, I headed to the yard to begin the process of cleaning out the flower beds and see what needs to be done next.

Last year, I had planted three unusual crepe myrtles, a low-growing, small variety with cascades of lavender blooms appearing in the hot weather.  They didn't do particularly well last year--fairly normal for newly planted landscape foliage, but by late fall, I wasn't sure they would survive at all.  I guessed they didn't make it through the winter--going into those really cold days could easily have been too much for plants already stressed and fragile.

I was surprised to see that one of them showed some leafing out Saturday morning.  The other two looked very dead, and I began to mentally consider what I might use to replace them.

I was completely shocked when, about three hours later, I looked at those other two plants and saw tiny leaves popping out all over.  In just a few hours, and very, very early in the year, in my opinion, these three young plants said, "I'm alive, I'm well and I will produce this year!"

In just a few hours, what looked dead sprang to life.  I checked them again this morning--there are certainly some dead branches on those young plants, but it very much appears that they will do well.  I'll trim them in a few more days, and then watch and see what happens.

Spring is always a sign to me of Resurrection hope.  Lent is the time for the trimming of my soul. Every soul needs it, mine very much included. 

How is your soul trimming coming?


Batbogey said...

The dirt and plants called to us, too!

I'm pondering why it is that the human race enjoys growing things not just to eat - but just to tend them for their color, their texture and their character.

My Lenten musings on the soil led me to think of the fact that, while tending to our trees, flowers and plants *is* an effort, the effort isn't really all that herculean. The raw stuff is there, created and waiting to become something temporal. Temporal but wonderful.

Lucinda Breeding

VICKI A. said...

The coming of spring and its perfectly timed purpose represents my recovery from a mental illness. I started life out as a competent, well-adjusted person with much promise. Accomplishment awaited me, my future looked good.

Then I hit a winter thatI could not at all emerge from, and retreated into dormancy.

But no one ever gave up on me. I was tended to, loved, valued, brought water to even when it seemed I could not drink it.

I was "time standing still," my strength of will was within me but not of me. Now I know it was of God. I know that, because I finally bloomed. My limbs were trimmed so I could begin to take life and learn how to live it. That is my Lenten lesson for this newfound spring.

Christy Thomas said...

We do have such a need for beauty--I think it is part of the Imago Dei stamped on our soul. As we create beauty, we reflect God's creative energies.

"Time Standing Still" is indeed winter--so protracted, at times, yet absolutely necessary for real blooming.

May we all savor this spring, every single moment of it.

Angie Hammond said...

I wish that Spring really would bring life to where I teach. I'm afraid that Spring for me means seniors that are giving up, or failing because they are afraid of what life will bring them when summer comes and they are on their own.

I work the soil all year long with them, and then spring comes and they act as if the winter was so hard on them that there is no life left in them.

I tried to picture the scene you spoke of regarding the signs of life in the plants you thought were dead. In my heart, I keep hoping each day that I too will see signs of life in those that I think are dead or dying before my very eyes.

Your post and the comments reminded me that while I am the steward of the garden, God is the gardener and he will bring spring to the land in his time and not mine. It is just my job to trim and take care of the soil.

Thank you all for giving me rays of hope during a season that for me means much anxiety and fear for my students, along with stress and frustration for me.