As I write I am aware that the days are getting longer and the first signs of spring are all about us. The crocuses and tulips are poking through the ground. As we embrace all that spring brings, let us not forget that it was only a few months ago that those same plants had died back. The natural cycle of our world moves from death into new life, along with the ebb and flow of the tide which brings with it a new seascape.
The pattern of created order has its imprint also in the Christian hope of new life emerging out of death. We hear it in the words of Jesus:
“I tell you most solemnly, unless a wheat grain falls on the ground and dies, it remains only a single grain; but if it dies, it yields a rich harvest.” John 12:24
As we journey through Lent there is a sense in which we are also called to die to ourselves, to put aside our selfish ambitions and desires. The more we insist on our own way, the more we lose sight of what gives us life. Like a seed that does not go down into the soil or a branch cut off from the vine, to use two images given by Jesus himself, we find no nourishment and have nothing to draw upon.
The signs of spring bring us hope, and a year on into this pandemic, the vaccine also brings new hope as well. Yet, you may be feeling a bit weary with it all—well, I can assure you that you are not alone! However, we are not without hope when we dare to shift our focus. In the words of that traditional hymn, by Helen Lemmel:-
Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus,
Look Full In His Wonderful Face;
And The Things Of Earth Will Grow Strangely Dim
In The Light Of His Glory And Grace.
O Soul Are You Weary And Troubled?
No Light In The Darkness You See?
There’s Light For A Look At The Saviour,
And Life More Abundant And Free:
Through Death Into Life Everlasting
He Passed, And We Follow Him There;
Over Us Sin No More Hath Dominion
For More Than Conqu’rors We Are!
His Word Shall Not Fail You He Promised;
Believe Him And All Will Be Well.
Then Go To A World That Is Dying,
His Perfect Salvation To Tell!
The modern version by Lauren Daigle is well worth checking out—google it and listen to it!
Be assured of my prayers,