Today’s Reading: John 19:41-42 (NIV)
41 At the place where Jesus was crucified, there was a garden, and in the garden a new tomb, in which no one had ever been laid. 42 Because it was the Jewish day of Preparation and since the tomb was nearby, they laid Jesus there.
I’m looking forward to my first of many springtime strolls. It won’t be long before the azaleas are in full bloom in Missouri. Yellow forsythia bushes and pink red bud trees will open in flowering splendor. The peach blossoms on the tree in my front yard will decorate my kitchen table in just a few short weeks. Clematis vines will shoot up from the ground, while tender daffodils and tulips will bloom in garden beds. It’s time to clean out the water garden and prepare the fountain for the returning birds. We see new birth surround us in the spring - it is just around the corner. Can you sense the anticipation of a beautiful spring day?
Historians tell us that on the day Jesus died, the skies turned dark. It may have been storming as Joseph and Nicodemus carried the body of the Lord to the garden tomb. In my mind’s eye, I can hear the rain falling; the wind was whipping around the garden, as tree branches bent low in reverence to the Lord’s passing. Flowers had closed up and were drooping toward the ground. Even the rocks were crying. Puddles were forming along the path. It was not a day to take a stroll through the garden. Yet, the disciples could not help but be drawn to this humble place. The body of our Lord was there, and no one wanted to leave.
We can get lost in the wintertime of our lives. It seems that the cold air is simply a mirrored reflection of the grief we hold in our hearts. The pain of separation, of losing someone we love, can leave us feeling numb and hopeless. We wonder if springtime will ever return.
It is cloudy and cold where I live today. Knowing that spring is just around the corner makes this day worthwhile. I plan to take a stroll in the garden, because I know what is coming. New life will be here before we know it, and when new life returns, everything changes. Take a walk with me today. Come to the garden where Jesus was buried, and wait with me as we watch for signs of new life.
Resurrection is coming.
Grace and peace,
Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO
© Copyright 2009, Deb Spaulding
All rights reserved
Articles may not be printed in any “for profit” publication without further permission by the author. Articles may be freely distributed via e-mail, reprinted in church bulletins or in other non-profit publications without further permission. Please keep this copyright and Web Site information intact with copied articles. Articles are sent originally to subscribers only. You may have received a forwarded or reprinted copy.