“Therefore, gird up the loins of your mind, live soberly, and set your hopes completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13 NAB).
I am envious of the black bear that finds a warm dark cave at autumns end. He nestles in for the deep sleep that envelops him until the scent of spring flowers awakens him from his lengthy slumber. As the wintery temperatures continue to plummet I feel the cold permeate my bones, and I long for the warm breezes of summertime.
Just when I think I cannot withstand even one more day of winter's onslaught, I begin to hear birds singing atop the trees, although the branches remain bare. Their singing reminds me that spring is on its way, and something miraculous is about to happen! The sun will melt away the icy menace, and flowers will begin to bloom. The smell of fresh earth will begin to assail the senses as stark green blades of grass emerge from the once frozen earth, and I am so grateful. I am so grateful that winter is only but a season. Winter can be a season of immeasurable beauty that can all too often be unforgiving and cruel, but it is in her beauty that we can find the strength to withstand her dark days and emerge victorious.
Much like winter, life too in all its startling beauty and awe, can be unforgiving and cruel, but it too is only but a season. A season, we as Christians understand, will be allotted with trials and triumphs, yet never without the hope of emerging victorious. Beneath the layers of frozen hard earth, it is impossible to see the life within that awaits the suns healing rays, just as in these dark days it is hard to see the healing hand of Christ upon our broken world, but he is there. As the birds remind us that spring is indeed coming, the season of Lent reminds the world that Christ too is indeed coming! He has already come, and he has triumphed. Lent is the season in which we find the strength to endure the dark days as we await Christ’s return. Are we grateful for what he has already accomplished for our salvation, or are we allowing the darkness of this world to render us frozen and despairing? It is through the darkness of the world that we must be a light that shines before others, that they too may receive his grace!
God Bless and happy Lent!