I need thy presence every passing hour; what but thy grace can foil the tempter’s power? Who, like thyself, my guide and stay can be? Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me. ~ Henry Frances Lyte (1793-1847)
The birds were singing this morning while it was still dark. It was joyful music. They know, I imagine, that spring will arrive later today. I might sing, too, once I wake up.
Later I sat in my prayer chair where the sun came through the window and touched my face. With my eyes closed, all I could see was orangey brightness and feel the healing warmth on my face. I sensed God in the brightness and thought about the Sonshine. My soul responds as I feel a bit of the winter darkness lifting. How I need that; it has been a rough winter for me.
Later still, while at my computer, I see a big fat yellow cat wandering around my back yard. It looks like she may be looking for a place to birth babies. Squirrels are scampering in the trees and the birds are still singing but not as loudly. The sky is bright blue and daffodils are budding. I just went to look and maybe tomorrow they will bloom. The trees have been budding for weeks. Later today, it will be warm enough to sit out in the sun. I am reminded of this verse from the Song of Solomon, “See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone. Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land.” (Vs. 11-12). Of course we know that March and April are our most snowy months, and here in semi-arid land we want rain, just not all at once so that it floods. We are a particular people. But spring is springing and I, for one, am so very grateful. Thank you Lord.
As I consider the orange glow of the sun and of the Son, I know that I must pay attention to both. The sun is so good for my body, especially my mood, but the Son, Jesus, is absolutely necessary for my growth. I have been reminded over the last few months that there is very little that I have to do with my spiritual growth and transformation, or with my circumstances for that matter. I can’t fix much, and some things I am unable to change at all. God knows, I try. My spiritual practices, especially prayer and community help the most. I really can’t do without either. In prayer, I’m finding that sitting in silence, or at least as much silence as I can manage with my introverted, over-active mind trying to intrude, being still with God in silent prayer changes me the very most. For part of the time these last few weeks, being still with God was about all I could manage. Hanging on is my job.
This psalm for today certainly seems to fit:
Come, let us sing to the Lord; let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving and raise a loud shout to him with psalms.
For the Lord is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are the caverns of the earth, and the heights of the hills are his also. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands have molded the dry land.
Come, let us bow down, and bend the knee, and kneel before the Lord our Maker. For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture and the sheep of his hand. Oh, that today you would hearken to his voice! ~ Psalm 95:1-7