“The promise of spring’s arrival is enough to get anyone through the bitter winter!”~Jen Selinsky
I’ve never quite been through the whole season of winter. Maybe only a taste of it-I have seen drizzles of snowflakes at the end of fall and brave through some strong winds at the start of spring. From the little I gathered, winter is never man’s best friend. We need a certain warmth to keep our bodies going and working properly for us. Migration and hibernation are common effects of winter upon animals. Crops would have been harvested by the time the chill kicks in. I am thankful for being born in this little red dot, a tropical island we called home. We are pretty blessed as there is enough humidity to keep our skins moist, despite the discomfort caused by perspiration from the heat almost all year round with some showers here and there.
As the seasons of the year, so are the seasons of life. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 says there is a time for everything.
“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.”
The long and hot days of summer comes.
(Photo: Boracay; June 2012)
The burdens of life for man and beast start loading. Men who are wise make use of their foresight and strength to move purposefully forward. The toils and tasks of summer tax resolve and challenge dreams. It is probably among the saddest of tragedies that some miss the opportunities and glories of summer altogether, like grasshoppers frittering away its opportunities as in the fable “The Ant and the Grasshopper”, or spoiled children ignoring its glories through the blindness of ingratitude. And summer does not last forever, in due course, it passes.
The revered beauty of autumn arrives, a favored time of harvests and rewards.
(Photo: Korea, Seoul; November 2015)
But the days are shortening and the shadows are lengthening. The glory of the leaves’ myriad colors is short-lived, and they silently fall to the ground. A chill in the wind is a harbinger of the winter that is just ahead. Migratory birds take wing in search of a warmer clime, and the great bears seek for a safe seclusion for hibernation, to sleep through the harshness of winter, to survive the wintry temperatures.
The frosts of winter sneak in inevitably.
One may only be walking down quiet streets with sheer illumination by indoor lit lamps from houses and the buzz from yesterday.
“Nothing burns like the cold.”~George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones.
The frigid blasts of winds and rain sweep across mountains and plains, hills and valleys, city streets and countryside. The grasshoppers and tenderest plants are the first to die, but many hearty creatures succumb and even the stately oaks’ and elms’ limbs are barren and appear lifeless. All the endurance and perseverance through the merciless chill is for nothing but the promise of spring.
When Spring is here, new life is seen all around, life itself is filled with freshness and hope.
New leaves adorn the trees and flowers blossom.
The birds sing and even the crow returns for spring. Their fragrances and melodies sweeten the air.
The “pulseless heart of the buried acorn” bursts out of the prison walls of its shell and there, emerges the beginnings of a mighty oak.
(Photos: Japan, Tokyo & Kyoto; April 2016)
All of nature standing tall to join in the joy of life. Such is spring, a season of life and new beginnings.
As we reflect on the seasons of life, we see and say that we are birthed and shall die. At the same time, we can luxuriate in the belief that there is the promise of spring. I see life after death as of the spring that follows winter. The latter is what we can usually see or even experience in places with continental climate, but the former is only assured by the immutable promise of the Almighty God and the resurrection of Jesus Christ himself from the dead (I Peter 1:3,4; Acts 17:30-31). This unspeakable hope, the promise of new life, produces faith, as we walk with our Father in His Love.
“Spring passes and one remembers one’s innocence.
Summer passes and one remembers one’s exuberance.
Autumn passes and one remembers one’s reverence.
Winter passes and one remembers one’s perseverance.”~Yoko Ono
His beautiful & relentless love makes a soul relentlessly beautiful.