Spring is coming in the southern hemisphere.
The days are becoming longer, minute by minute. The sun is growing warmer, little by little. The leaves are growing bigger, the buds are unfurling, and the mousebirds are feasting on them with loud conversations and discussions. The violets – such quintessential English plants – are peeping through their dark green leaves, and the jasmine is about to burst into flower.
I love jasmine and violets. I always pick them and have them in the house when they are in full bloom. The first tight buds of jasmine are the first sign of spring for me and I enjoy the gentle way they perfume my kitchen with their sweet scent.
The birds are bright in their breeding colours. Nests are being built, partners found. My garden, as always at this time of the year, is crying out for change – new plants, compost (do you put compost down now, or am I too late?), fertilizer.
There is a bare patch outside my bedroom window. It is sunny at this time of year, but when the leaves are out in full, it will be in deep shade, and I struggle to find something that can cope with both conditions. So it goes from lush to bare to lush, depending on what I decide to plant.
This is the time of the year when the gardener in me awakes. That part of me is dormant most of the year, but now I long to go to a nursery and buy! So tomorrow I will.
Only one thing holds the garden back. We have not yet had any rain. Not since April. The lawn is brown and has stopped growing; some of the shrubs show no sign of life and look as if I should dig them out. But I know better. I have learned that with the first rain, they too will burst into leaf and then flower and I will celebrate their beauty once again.
So why should I go out and buy plants now, before the rain? Because today is overcast and cool – and rain is forecast! Hooray! I am so excited about this evidence, once again, of the provision and unchanging nature of God who provides our every need.
Rain is coming! A cold wind is blowing from the south, where they have had snow. And that wind can bring us rain. Perhaps, this time, I may even dance in it – or, on second thoughts, perhaps not!
Spring is here. And it is good and full of promise. Thank you, Abba, for the seasons.