spring and lingering

Despite being out of college for three years, my life is inevitably divided by semesters as a result of working in college ministry. The fall semester is my favorite time. At first, the weeks at the end of August and September feel a little bit like tax season for an accountant – the days are overflowing with welcome back events, get to know you dinners, and more pancakes than I can stand at our annual pancake kickoff. But as fall starts to settle in and the leaves start to change, there’s an excitement that abounds as students are eagerly seeking a church to connect with and will open up their hearts the first time you get coffee because fall is for friendship and all things wonderful. I love fall and I wish it would stay forever. But then there’s spring. I will admit, spring has never been my favorite. The spring semester in our ministry can be a little awkward – one of the campuses has a long Jan term followed by a school wide event that takes over the first three weeks of school, and it can feel impossible to gain momentum. People get busy and  become less eager to come to church, then before you know it spring break is here, then just a few weeks until finals, and oh hey, summer? How did we get here?! Where it’s hot and sticky and everything is slowly melting and I want to never leave the air conditioning. So yea, spring… Not always my favorite. But recently, something has changed about springtime. The beautiful buds that bloom on the trees, the wildflowers that pop up on the highway and the cool but sunny days have actually had quite a nice effect on me this year. Normally I wish for spring to just hurry up and pass by so we can be one step closer to fall. This particular spring has ushered in unprecedented busyness for Ethan in work, so I find myself with a lot of free time as he is having to put in extra hours and late nights. The unexpected rest and quiet has let me stop and take note of the perfect stillness that spring brings. It’s always like this I guess, but I’ve never stopped to admire these days. It’s the calm and cool before the hot summer. It’s beautiful and full of so much life! It’s bursting with color and fresh beginnings and this wonderful peace that leads to Easter Sunday. The best part of spring is the way the flowers come so suddenly, without regard to the weird frost just a few days earlier and as if their only purpose is to look beautiful and make you smile. They spring from the ground overnight and fulfill their one purpose, glorifying God and reminding us that He cares for them:

And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Matthew 6:28-29

Spring could be one of the most encouraging times as believers if we took this truth to heart and actually trusted our Father’s provision. I’ve been rushing through spring my whole life, when I could have been lingering in the beauty of this pretty reminder.

So, I’m using this spring to linger… to soak up the season I am often so quick to pass through. I’m pausing to thank Christ for the new life that I see on the side of the road and in the trees where I work. Why pass up on this precious time that’s bursting with so much good? It seems that spring just may be one of the better seasons afterall!

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