Monday, February 18, 2013

March Newsletter

This is the first verse of one of my favourite Lenten hymns. Mind you many times I have used it on a Sunday only to have a winter storm blow in the next day. Almost like a challenge.

As the sun with longer journey
melts the winter's snow and ice,
with its slowly growing radiance
warms the seed beneath the earth,
may the sun of Christ's uprising
gently bring our hearts to life. 
(Verse 1 of #111 in Voices United ©1981 John Patrick Earls)

With spring comes the lengthening of days, warming the soil (eventually, once all the snow and frost are gone – sometime around May in these parts) and promising new life. With Spring also comes Easter and its promise of new life. Both Spring and Easter bring the promise of life in the face of seeming total death. 

But of course there is a problem with the hymn. It is not the journey of the sun that brings this to happen. It is the journey of the earth. As winter moves into spring and spring into summer the path taken by this spinning speck of rock and water turns us into the sun for longer and longer. Even on a daily basis we make the age-old mistake as we talk about sunrise and sunset (now I have the song from Fiddler on the Roof running through my head, but that links to a whole other set of musings).

Astronomy tells us that the sun does move, pulling us around the galaxy with it. But that movement is not responsible for sunrise. What we call sunrise is really our portion of the globe turning toward the sun. And I think the same image works for the new life of Easter.

Maybe the new life of Easter is found, not by the Son turning to us but by our turning to the Son. Maybe the warmth of God's love is only truly felt when we turn towards it, when we open ourselves up to it. God moves in the universe, pulling us around – sometime willingly, sometimes less so – with God. But maybe that is only part of the story? 

The Sun's light and warmth are there whether we are on the part of the globe turned towards it or away from it. God's light and hope and life are always there. But maybe we only fully appreciate and experience them when we turn towards them? 

This Lent and Easter season how will you turn (or let yourself be turned) towards the Son? How will “the sun of Christ's uprising gently bring [y]our hearts to life”? What is the dawn that awaits you this Easter morning?

No comments:

Post a Comment