Thursday, April 23, 2009

Spring in Upstate New York

It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is. And when you've got it, you want - oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so! ~Mark Twain

In the spring I have counted one hundred and thirty-six different kinds of weather inside of four and twenty hours. ~Mark Twain

The above quotes from Mark Twain are a reminder that the season of Spring is a time of yearning and uncertainty. Nature’s awakening in this season stirs in us a yearning for change, newness, and rebirth. And Spring does not disappoint. Soon the tulips will be in bloom in Albany’s Washington Park, blossoms will adorn the fruit trees, leaves will cover the now bare limbs, and peas will be picked in the vegetable garden. Soon…but when? Like children on a journey we ask each Spring morning; “Are we there yet?” We are impatient after a long and cold winter and desire a rebirth NOW!
And that brings us to the uncertainty and fickleness of Spring reflected in Twain’s second quote. This season of hope does not come to us in a smooth and steady revelatory process with each day becoming progressively warmer and full of more and more promise. No, it is an on again/off again season with ups and downs, joys and disappointments. Today as I write, it is in the 50’s but tomorrow brings the promise of an 80 degree day.
Spring is a wonderful metaphor of what it means to be on a faith journey. The Holy Spirit stirs in us a yearning and desire to walk closer with God. To experience the Holy Presence in all that we do. We wish that we would make a steady progression in this most significant task. The truth is that it is on again/off again and filled with days of hope and days of disappointment. This is not because God is fickle or uncertain. The promises revealed to us through Jesus are certain and assured. It is our fears, anxieties, and impatience that create the uncertainty in our hearts.

The year's at the spring

And day's at the morn;

Morning's at seven;

The hillside's dew-pearled;

The lark's on the wing;

The snail's on the thorn;

God's in His heaven -All's right with the world!

~Robert Browning

Hope springs eternal when “God’s in His heaven-All’s right with the world”!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Easter Eve

With hours to go before this most significant dawn.....I am pondering this statement by Richard W. Swanson...
The task on Easter (which is every Sunday for an Easter-based faith) is to tell stories about resurrection in a world where everyone dies.