I live in Scotland, and this year, it has been a long long winter. Granted, much of our weather is on the colder and rainier side throughout the year, however, we had some of the heaviest snow we’ve had for a few years. Now, that in itself wouldn’t be so bad had some of these snow days not stretched right into March, with rainy and wintry spells during early April as well. There has also been forecasts of snow to follow towards the end of April and even into May!
So if you’re from a warmer country and think it unusual that we walk around in summer clothes on what you would consider a sunny yet cold day, perhaps even wintry on your scale, you might understand a little better how excited we get to have our little dose of warmth and sunlight.
I can’t tell you how refreshing it is to finally see some sunny days as we approach the beginning of May, and we know that we can’t predict a long hot summer, and that we have forecasts of rain intermittently between those sunnier days, so we really do lap up the goodness when we can. At last, the parks are full, people are out walking their dogs, running, skateboarding, cycling, meeting with friends, and the birds are noticeably chirpier as they sing their little springtime hearts out!
There are few things in life sweeter than basking in the warmth of the sun streaming through your window. Time seems to slow down on days like this, especially when we have a cool breeze as well so that we can enjoy the warmer weather without feeling stifled by it. We wake up slowly into life again. Time slows, and the simple things, like listening to the sound of birds, relaxing in the warmth, enjoying nature, and taking time to notice the here and now, take on a richer significance in our experience.
The best things in life are free, and we embrace them when we can, for many are not so fortunate to be blessed with both sweet weather and peaceful circumstances….we are not cocooned from the troubles going on in the world, and yet, the sweetness of the simple things in life is still to be enjoyed and appreciated, that as we are refreshed in our souls, we can give out more love to a world that so greatly needs it.
So my little gift is to share with you the joy of spring’s arrival in a cold country….the weather forecast for tomorrow is rain…so we make the best of each season of life as it comes to us, and share with each other the goodness along the way. Be blessed. xx
p.s. what is spring like where you are? 🙂
February, being the shortest month, has swiftly drawn to a close, and March ~ the month in which we expect spring to have sprung ~ has promptly arrived.
However, here in the United Kingdom, as anyone who is familiar with our obsession with talking about the weather will know, spring, summer and in fact all four seasons can be a little unpredictable. At least *that* is something we can be certain of!
Here is a delightful scene for the first day of spring!
Snow and sunshine has graced the first morning of spring. However, despite how pretty this scene looks, the Met Office has declared a ‘Red’ weather warning since yesterday – the highest level – with possible further disruptions and risk to life as the ‘Beast from the East’ as the Siberian chill and moving weather patterns has been termed gives way to what the Spanish and Portuguese meteorologists have named ‘Storm Emma’, coming up from the South. Emma and the Beast! What a combination!
This gently beguiling scene veils the travel disruption, cancelled trains, hundreds of commuters stuck in airports and ‘stranded’ in their cars on the motorway for over 12 hours since last night, early office closures and increased call outs to emergency services. For a cold country perhaps we are a little ‘light weight’ when it comes to dealing with the varying forms of precipitation we intermittently face. Perhaps Canadians and New Yorkers and people from other regularly snowy countries and cities would laugh us to scorn at our inability to take such storms and snow flurries in our stride. However, the snow has brought out a brighter side to things. The crisp cold air, and beautiful natural scenes of trees and parks blanketed in white, the snow ball fights, gleeful children during their school closures and people sledging and having fun have all been something to bring a smile to the heart.
However, as much as we Brits talk about the weather, the true essence of these musings is a little deeper than the 18 centimetres of snow this city saw at one point. As the snow thaws in the sun, and seasons change, we realise too that our lives are passing, fleeting and as much as we long for the predictability and familiarity of seasons clearly demarcated as they ‘should’ be, our lives are actually often windswept by unexpected change, unpredictable events, uncertainty and consequently anxiety. We strive to pull out all the stops to regain control such as shovelling away the snows of doubt and worry, hoping that with enough effort we can clear our own paths and watch the unknowns melt away. Perhaps you are a seasoned warrior of change, or maybe a seasoned worrier with every uncertainty. Maybe you thrive on the adrenaline rush that living in the moment and embracing the unknown brings. However, regardless of your temperament, I believe that as human beings, at the core we do need a root of certainty in our lives. Not the certainty of known events or situations or happenings as such, but something even deeper and more fundamental. We need to know, deep in our souls, that when the storms of life come as inevitably and sometimes without much forecast or warning they do, that we have something to anchor to, something that will sustain us in our deepest uncertainty, and something far beyond our meagre efforts to dig out a clear pathway for ourselves.
Do you ever think about such things when life is going smoothly for you? Do you find yourselves wondering what will hold you when you are in the eye of your life’s storm? Perhaps you are yet to weather any severe or significant storms in your life as yet, but how can you be certain that you never will? Perhaps you have weathered many difficult experiences in your life and wish that the storm would soon pass and the sun would shine again. And maybe through your adversities you have gleaned great insights, or maybe you feel defeated, discouraged or broken hearted.
Your story, your life matters. It matters because you matter. But as you make your way through one changing season of your life to the next, what is your anchor? For me, through many storms, some longer lasting than others, I have found that nothing I can do can truly anchor my own soul, and the anchor which holds me, the rock on which I know I have a sure foundation in life is the Rock of Christ. Tried and tested, and found Faithful through every storm, and in the sunshine seasons of life too. And ultimately my Certainty and Hope beyond death.
What do you hold to? What or who holds you? Do you have certainty in your uncertainty? I would love to hear your thoughts, but if you’d prefer not to comment, then I hope you can find a few quiet moments to ponder and reflect upon your life, your uncertainties and what you have knowingly or subconsciously put your hope and trust in to hold you through all of life, as you embark upon this new season and first day of ‘Spring’.
Much love. xx