It’s spring. Finally. I’ve been ready for this day for about 80% of winter, and I rejoice that it is finally here. It does seem apt that only a few weeks ago there was snow on the ground in London, and this morning, I wake to clean pavements and blue sky.
This year, as spring rolls around again, I am reminded of a familiar feeling of triumph.
Is there a better picture of the gospel than spring?
I don’t think it’s a mistake that God has designed our world with seasons, times, months, and days. It’s no coincidence that every September, everything around us begins to die. The days get shorter, and darker, and colder. Leaves begin to fall from the trees; by October they stand there bare, having to endure another five cold, windy, rainy months before being dressed again. Colour is stripped from the scene as flowers die, and leaves rot on the pavements, and darkness reigns for most of the hours of each day.
It’s a depressing picture, and would be absolutely so if not for spring.
It’s only once we’ve almost lost sight of this hope that something begins to happen.
And so we wait.
And finally, finally, along creeps spring.
And there are tiny pale green shoots, pushing through the dark frozen ground.
Delicate white blossom begin to adorn the bare branches again.
Suddenly, the parks and pavements and gardens begin to fill with colour with the defiantly yellow daffodils, purple crocuses, white snowdrops.
The evenings begin to get a little lighter, the sky staying blue instead of black.
Every now and then there are small but strong rays of sunshine, slicing through the long shadows.
And isn’t this the most incredible picture of life springing from death?
Hope has won, yet again, for another year.
And this year, as I’ve remembered what it feels like to long so acutely for hope, and restoration, and life, I’ve been full of gratefulness that spring comes every year. God knows how quick we are to forget his goodness, and grace, and faithfulness. And so he’s planned our entire calendar around reminding us that life will triumph over death, every. single. year.
In the gospel of Jesus there is hope to be found. And the annual coming of spring, whilst magnificent and wondrous, is just a little picture of the eternal triumph of life over death that Jesus won for us at the cross.
C.S. Lewis was onto something when he described the coming of our saviour, the coming of the great Lion Aslan, just like the coming of spring:
“Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again.”