“Look, the winter is past, and the rains are over and gone. The flowers are springing up, the season of singing birds has come, and the cooing of turtledoves fills the air. The fig trees are forming young fruit, and the fragrant grapevines are blossoming. Rise up, my darling! Come away with me, my fair one!” —Song of Solomon 2:11-13 NLT
I will admit it—although I don’t like to—because I love where I live: New Hampshire is not all that great at doing spring. Summers here are glorious. The temperatures are hot, but not too hot. High humidity comes only occasionally and goes away at night leaving cooler air behind. Autumn … now that’s where we shine even more. The brilliant colors of the leaves combined with the deep blue of a fall sky are magnificent. I used to long for even the smell of autumn when we lived in places far from home. Winter is beautiful too with the magical coating of snow to soften the cold temperatures.
Spring, however? Well. It teases us with a day here and there, but mostly hides from us elusively. We see mud, rain, and raw temperatures for an awfully long time before we actually turn into spring. We look with yearning at pictures of blossoming trees in Virginia, and we sigh as we look at our still bare branches up here. (Shout out to you, Virginia: you do spring well. Very well, indeed!) It’s not uncommon to see crocuses covered with a surprise spring snowfall. Yes, spring dillies and dallies on its way to full ripening in my state. We have to be very patient. We have to hold on to the faith that it Will. Actually. Show. Up. Eventually.
I will say this: spring has always come. I’ve lived six decades, and not a year yet have the buds on the trees failed to finally appear, followed by tightly curled and fresh green leaves, unrolling themselves slowly into full leafy beauty. My rhododendron bush goes from a solid dark green to a purple puff of color. Every year. We just have to wait for it.
And we find ourselves delighted at last when the leaves are flush with green and the grass shimmers with sunshine, waves in the warm breezes, and sprouts the occasional cheery dandelion. Because we had to wait for it and yearn for it, we seriously appreciate it. You’ll find nothing blasé about our wonder and admiration of a spring fully sprung. We go a little crazy as we mow our lawns for the first time and smell the neighbor’s grill lighting up. We soak up that sunshine like a feast after a long fast. Something about waiting grows a deeper appreciation for the object of our wait.
And so all of us around the globe wait and yearn for a return to a life of families hugging and neighbors gathering, of weddings celebrated in crowded rooms with guests dancing happily, bumping into each other without worry. We long to eat at our favorite restaurant without looking suspiciously at the wait staff, hoping they’re not infected. We remember with fondness grocery shopping without a mask, bumping into someone we know and stopping for a quick talk and a hug. All those things that we’re waiting for will be doubly precious because we’ve lost them for a while. Something about waiting grows a deeper appreciation for the object of our wait.
So let’s wait with expectant hope and long patience, knowing that indeed a time will finally come when the rains and muds and puddles of quarantine-living give way to up close and personal living once more. And beyond that, as Christians let’s wait with expectant hope and a long patience for Jesus’ return—when the earth will be made new and spring will be waiting in an abundance of beauty the likes of which we have never seen or even imagined. Something about waiting grows a deeper appreciation for the object of our wait. And in this case we’re yearning for our good and glorious God to come and make everything right. And come He will. As surely as spring follows winter. Our longing is great and our hope is certain.
Father God, thank You for seasons. Thank You for the steady rhythm in the turning of our planet and its revolutions around the sun that guarantee day and night, day and night, and season following season. The steadiness of your creation is a great comfort, Lord, in this time of uncertainty. Great is Your faithfulness. And You, who set this world into motion, have promised us a time when You shall dwell with us—and all will be truly well. We wait and long for that day. Oh, Lord, we know that the wait will be eclipsed by the joy! Thank You and Come Soon, Lord Jesus. Please, come soon! Amen.
You are loved,
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