It was good to see hope last week.
I saw it in rows of freshly plowed dirt, trees with no leaves (yet), tiny crocuses pushing their way out of the brown remnants of Fall, and neighbors emerging from winter caves. Hope came in the signs of Spring.
I miss the northern seasons. I know, I know. I live in paradise. Where there are swaying palm trees and white sandy beaches and azure waves and flowers blooming all year long. But there’s something about seeing the defining divisions of the year. Summer. Fall. Winter. Spring. Especially Spring.
Spring Break gave me the chance to be with family and see…Spring. We walked among the rows of dirt at the Community Garden. Some would-be farmers were already starting to turn the soil over, getting ready to plant. A few were cleaning up the remainders of last year’s harvest. Then we walked under the bare trees – still leafless, but with little buds swelling at the branch tips. The crocuses were up – white ones, yellow ones, purple ones – bathed in the warmth of sun that was a little higher in the sky, always the first flowers to herald the change. And people were out and about, with neighborly greetings and smiles.
It felt like hope. It looked like hope. The winter is over. Things aren’t quite what they will be in a few months, but there’s no doubt about it. Things are beginning to change.
It made me want to look for hope in my own life. I think sometimes down here in the land where the seasons are so subtle, I forget to look for it. The days can seem the same, blending together so that suddenly months have gone by and years have gone by, and I haven’t taken the time to actually stop and look for the evidence of things beginning to change. I want to notice when something pokes itself out of the dirt. I want to notice when something I thought was dead starts to bring forth a tiny bud. I want to prepare my soil for a new season of planting and growth.
I’m glad God doesn’t have us jump right from Winter to Summer. And maybe I’m glad that God doesn’t give us everything we want as soon as we ask for it. Because there’s something special about that period when you start to see the signs of Spring. When you start to see…hope.
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful. Hebrews 10:23
This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil. Hebrews 6:19
That they may set their hope in God,
And not forget the works of God,
But keep His commandments. Psalm 78:7