“Spring is sprung.
The grass is ‘ris.
I wonder where the birdies is?”
I don’t know if that’s even a real poem, but my Dad used to love saying it each Spring, concluding with a bright smile and wink. Maybe it’s because the advent of Spring can be subtle in the West. I’ve lived in the Midwest and on the East Coast, where Spring arrives with a stupendous burst of flowers of all kinds and green growing things that have been dormant through the Winter under the snow. The sight of blooming forsythia will shake you out of any lingering Winter lethargy, to be sure.
Spring comes in more quietly in the Western states. But, comes, it does. It calls us to pay attention to tiny new buds. To glimpse wild flowers strewn around. To hear the small birds that flit and peck and chirp in the yard.
To feel a hint of warmth in the breeze. To note the changing of the light and the lengthening days.
Spring is a fertile time, a greening time, a growing time … in nature and in our hearts. It’s the time of the vernal equinox and the crescent moon, a holy time of prayer and reflection in the traditions of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity. As we watch for signs of Spring in nature around, I invite us to welcome Spring into our hearts and souls as well, catching glimpses of love and joy in those around us – in the smile on a baby’s face, the kindness of a neighbor, the treasured face of love, the generosity of a stranger, the dedication of a teacher, the steadfastness of a friend. As the poet Mary Oliver puts it: “Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.”
By Reverend Patricia Farris
Senior Minister, Santa Monica First United Methodist Church