It has been a human desire for hundreds of years to make accurate weather predictions. Oral and written history are full of rhymes and anecdotes meant to guide us in our prediction of weather, fair or foul. For the farmer waiting to plant, or the merchant wanting to send a ship for trade, foreknowledge of the weather could mean the difference between success or failure. Thus the sayings…”Red sky in the morning, sailors take warning. Red sky at night, sailor’s delight” –or– “When clouds look like black smoke, A wise man will put on his cloak.”
Aside from the tragic and horrifying accounts of terror committed by Isis and the normal acts of aggression and human crisis that are the focus of the evening news, aside from these there is a another prevailing focus…THE WEATHER! I believe it has been the coldest winter in nearly twenty years. I find myself grumbling more than I should. Last week I went so far as to say under my breath “God didn’t intend for people to live in this sort of climate…Ugh! ” But it’s March now and we remember the much quoted phrase “March comes in like a Lion and Out Like a Lamb.” This we say because the month of March usually starts with cold, unpleasant weather, but hopefully ends mild and pleasant. For our sake let us hope so. Bring on Global warming I say, and please don’t delay.
This time of year I begin to long for days that are soft and gentle like a lamb. I treasure days when I can walk out doors without a coat and feel sun on my face. Days when I can pull the throttle and hear the rumble of my motorcycle. However, more often than not, March has its share of days that are like a lion in winter. Late snow and ice often come in March. Lions and lambs are good Biblical symbols. We are reminded by the prophet Isaiah that when the Kingdom of God comes the lion and the lamb will live peacefully together. What a great image! (Isaiah 11).
Sometimes our lives are like roaring lions—cold, angry, menacing, blowing us to and fro. Many times, the reason for our inner storms rest in our own sin, or lack of self-discipline. We remember that before humans sinned they lived in a beautiful garden where all the animals lived in peace. We long for moments of peace and harmony. Yet, like March our inner lives alternate between stormy weather and the peaceful sunshine of spring. The promise in Jesus Christ is that there will come a time when all the storms will cease and there will be a peaceable kingdom in our hearts. Lent offers us an opportunity to consider again the promises of God. We get to explore again the very core of our faith in the cross, the death, and the triumphant resurrection of Jesus Christ. Lent offers us a time to renew our self-reflection and self-discipline and deal with our secret sins. In moments of openness and reflection we may find ourselves wanting to put a lion or two in the cage, forsaking sins and weaknesses that are holding us back.
As we move through the Easter season, the Lenten journey, keep focus on the promises that lie ahead. No matter what storms may beset our lives, no matter how many and loud are the lions that roar…remember the “lamb of God” that has come with his Kingdom at hand. Joy comes in the morning! Easter will soon be here. Resurrection victory is just around the corner. A Blessed and deeply Spiritual Lenten Season to you all. He told me to tell you!