Today is a day to celebrate--the first in many months that our pond is free of ice. Geese returned several days ago to find it still frozen except for the edges, but the last of the thin gray sheet melted today, and the geese have no doubt staked out their favorite nesting spot--the tiny island in the middle of our pond. Ducks have come back, too. This signals the end of the coldest winter I've ever experienced. Week after week of single digits or colder in the daytime and often 20 below at night. When I saw deer grazing the edge of our lawn this morning I gave them my blessing and marveled that they could survive such brutal temperatures, made worse by sometimes fierce winds.
If there was anything redeeming about the last drawn-out month or so of winter, it was the lesson in hope it afforded. We knew spring had to come! Why? Because it's a law of earth science. So we bought seeds and potting soil, hauled the sap buckets from the shed on a sled and washed them, drilled holes in our biggest maple trees, hammered in the taps, and hung the buckets, even though there was little sign of warming. It was awhile before the sap ran. Even on a day when it was sunny and in the mid-40's, the trees held back. But they couldn't withstand the warm sun for long. Finally we got some good runs, and Colyn made almost three gallons of maple syrup. I love looking at the quart jars of it lined up on the fireplace mantel in the kitchen.
So it is with prayer, I'm finding more and more. Praying to understand better God's Word, listening for his messages to us, then holding to them despite apparent evidence to the contrary, we know "spring" has to come. Why? Because it's a law of divine Science. The Bible is full of these laws, as reliable as mathematics. "Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you." "And ye shall seek me and find me when ye shall search for me with all your heart." "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed, and ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
Here's to the spring in your heart.