Hints of spring arrive in England escorting fresh air and percolating the potential of life. Neighbors scurry about pruning their unattended gardens wrecked by winter’s slush. These days, the birds chirp a little louder and the sky seems a little bluer. The sun is beginning to stay awake longer making it possible for what was once hidden by winter’s protection to miraculously sprout in spring.
All of this seasonal excitement inspired me to google what season it is right now in Jerusalem. I wondered what the weather might have been like when Jesus carried His cross up the hill and hung there with nails through his hands and feet dying a criminal’s death without a crime.
Weather reports say that Jerusalem’s climate is mostly winter and summer with hints of spring. I wonder if on that first Easter the ground was still dry from winter’s wrath or if there were hints of spring piercing the soil on a hill called Skull.
When we first moved to our cozy little cottage on the outskirts of London, it was the peak of summer. The garden (what we Texans call a yard) was rich and vibrant with colorful life. But there was this one patch in the front of the house that was bare. It was almost like there was once something there that had died and not been replaced. It was one of the first areas you see as you walk up to the house. Wanting to help the landlord out and make his house look better, I spoke to the gardeners (hired by our landlord because I have no business tending to a garden) and asked if they could maybe put something in that spot to make it look better. They kind of nodded and bobbed their heads giving me the impression they were on it. Months passed and the patch laid bare. Winter approached so I knew it was too late to plant anything. It would remain an unwelcoming patch of barren wasteland.
I didn’t push the issue and I’m so glad I didn’t because as it turns out, there was something already there. It lay dormant, hidden underneath the earth through the remainder of the summer and throughout winter. Now, as winter is breaking and turning to spring, a large patch of green leaves began to pop through the barren earth. There was something there all along. I suspect the gardeners must have known.
Spring has not yet fully decided to come out and play. I think the bashful blooms will either be Daylilies or perhaps Hyacinth. I routinely make my way out to the garden with a hopeful expectation of color. I know it will be soon. I will wait. It will be worth it.
Had I forced the growth that I desired, what was hidden and waiting to surprise and bring me joy would have been destroyed.
I reflect on the hints of spring in Jerusalem on the day Jesus died.
I reflect on the forsaken soil where His cross dug deep.
I reflect on how Jesus is growing things that I cannot see.
I reflect on waiting for Easter’s bloom.
I reflect on the surprising joy to come.
I know it will be soon.
I will wait.
It will be worth it.
For what I once thought barren will bring forth life.
The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God. Isaiah 35:1-2 NIV
To read related articles about Lenten and Easter, click on these links:
Waiting for Easter
Five Uncelebrated People of the First Easter
Passion Week Experience: My Journey in Words
My friend, Kelly Smith, at Mrs. Disciple, hosts a Friday link up and the theme for this go-round is “Lent”. I’m linking this post up with hers and a variety of other great posts along the same theme. I hope you’ll jump over there and find something that enlightens and encourages you.
Andrea, this is beautiful! I choose my favorite posts of the week to share on my FB page the following week. Yours will be shared the first week of March! Blessings to you, Sarah
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Thank you, Sarah! I’m completely honored and humbled.
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Beautiful post! This: For what I once thought barren will bring forth life. You described it so well, both in your garden and surrounding the crucifixion. I will think of you and the cross as I see the little green springs push through the dirt this spring. Thanks for linking up with #FridayFive.
Thank you, Kelly! It’s always an encouragement to me to read your thoughts and a blessing to participate in the link up. ❤
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