Longing for Spring

Hear my prayer, O Lord;
let my cry come to you!
Do not hide your face from me
in the day of my distress!
Incline your ear to me;
answer me speedily in the day when I call!
Psalm 102:1-2 (ESV)

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
who satisfies you with good
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
Psalm 103:1-5 (ESV)

This is the time of year when I start longing for spring. I’m tired of clouds, cold, and confinement. I want a warm breeze, sunshine, the smell of green and growing things.
And yet, I wonder if I would appreciate spring as much if I hadn’t just come through winter? The first green of spring, the first mild breezes are so much more delightful after the gray of winter.

I think this is true of my Christian walk, too. When times are hard I long for some relief from the Lord. When his refreshing comes, it is so welcome and appreciated because I know how much I needed it. See the contrast in the two Psalms? We need both — we need to cry out to God in our times of darkness, and we need to praise him when he renews us. As Switchfoot sings, “The shadow proves the sunshine.”

I used to think that someday I’d have my life all together and nothing bad or hard would ever happen again. But as I’ve gotten older, I’ve realized that won’t happen this side of heaven. On my own I can’t get my life together. It’s only in Christ that I can experience renewal and healing.

Even though everything seems dark and dead in the winter, the earth is only waiting for spring’s renewal. It’s a reminder for me that God’s time of refreshing will come, too.

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