“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…” (Eccl 3:1-3).
Perhaps, more than any other time of the year, springtime reminds us of the cycle of life. The Dictionary defines time as “a system that measures duration.” As we look out our windows, we see winter’s brown grass now green, the empty limbs of winter’s bushes and trees now showing green sprouts and there is an occasional pink, purple, red, white, or yellow blossom. Springtime birds have arrived with song in the air. Death is replaced by new life. Joy is in the air, a hint of time to come.
In fact, for us as Christian people, we celebrate Jesus’ Resurrection, His death giving life, not just for a duration of time or season, but for eternity/forever. “I am the resurrection and I am the life,” says the Lord (Jn 11:25).
There’s a wonderful story about the time of Winston Churchill’s funeral, which he had a hand in planning. At the close of the service, a single trumpeter stood at the west end of St. Paul’s Abbey in England, where the sun sets, and played “Taps,” the song that signals dusk, the close of the day. At the final note, there was complete, total silence, the end of a full life.
Then, to everyone’s surprise, another trumpeter arose at the at the east end of The Abbey that faced the rising sun and played “Reveille,” the song that marks the beginning of a new day. The word translates, “Wake up.”
Life and death are not the only points of time. May I suggest that each day offers the opportunity to die to our old way of sin and rise to newness of life. Each minute gives us the chance of receiving new life. One of the gifts that Jesus offers us is the occasion to practice resurrection here and now. We can move from the empty tomb and darkness to new and surprising life and meet Jesus right this minute!
“So friends, every day do something that won’t compute.
Love the Lord. Love the world.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it…
Be joyful though you have considered all the facts.
Practice resurrection.” …all the time.
The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry
To God be the glory! Christ is Risen!