I spend a lot of time outdoors and love to notice the small details that announce the changing seasons.
Just a week ago I began to see tiny purple flowers peeking through the winter brown and heralding Spring’s return. Yesterday I found the first shy violets lifting their heads and today green has spread across the pastures overnight until it fills more space than the drab gray patches left over from last year’s bounty.
It is a good thing that the earth still turns and the seasons still roll. It is a reminder of God’s faithfulness to His promise:
“As long as the earth endures, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night will never cease.” Genesis 8:22 NIV
New flowers, new life, longer days, brighter sunshine are gifts.
But they are also a reminder that another season has passed, another calendar page has been torn off, another year has rolled by without the companionship of the child I love.
One of the things I am learning in this grief journey is that pain and joy, gladness and sorrow, hope and regret will forever be mixed in the marrow of my bones. Every smile will carry with it a tinge of sadness. Every new memory made will conjure up an old one undone.
And this is a gift as well.
Contrast sharpens the edges of everything. And death makes life more precious.
Now that I know, by experience, breath is fleeting and that no matter how carefully I plan, the future is not in my hands, I am free to live and love and inhale the fragrance of this one sacred moment because there just might not be another.
And now I have a word for you who brashly announce, “Today—at the latest, tomorrow—we’re off to such and such a city for the year. We’re going to start a business and make a lot of money.” You don’t know the first thing about tomorrow. You’re nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, “If the Master wills it and we’re still alive, we’ll do this or that.”
James 4:13-15 MSG