During the long cold days of winter, except for people, all the earth seems to be asleep. Trees are bare of their leaves, plants have died back, animals hide in burrows or nest in the trunks of trees, and only a few birds flit about looking for food. Continue reading The Earth Wakes Up→
March is a fickle month. The weather changes suddenly and without warning.
In one day it can feel like summer in the sunlight and winter in the shade. When the month begins it’s still Winter; at the end it’s more like Spring. This is the reason we say, March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb.
On the 20th day of March it’s official, spring has arrived. So what changes? Every day after Christmas Day is longer than the one before.
Each day the sun appears earlier, more to the north.During the day the sun is directly overhead. And each day the sun sets later.
With more sunlight temperatures rise and snow piles shrink. Birds return from their winter home. The first to arrive are Canada Geese and Mallard ducks. They sit on frozen ponds and wait for the ice to thaw.
Soon robins are back. There are no bugs for them to eat so they peck at last year’s apples still hanging on tree branches. Chickadees sing louder. Crows return to the trees where they hatched last year. They caw loudly and begin to collect twigs to rebuild the old nests.
The sun warms the earth. New green shoots poke through the snow. Buds form. Yellow and red tulips and blue crocuses burst into bloom. Velvety buds on tree branches begin to swell. Under the snow the grass begins to stir and turns green. Rabbits wake up and bound after each other. All are signs of gladness that winter is over.
People change too. They exchange their winter jackets for lighter ones. Ball caps replace toques and mitts are left at home. They walk straighter and their steps bounce. They turn their faces up to the sun to feel more of its warmth. They are smiling. Something new is happening.
Why is Spring important? Spring is the queen of seasons. Green, red, and yellow colors replace the drab white of winter. New plants grow picture-perfect. Birds sing cheery songs. There are new baby animals.
Spring brings hope. You feel its warmth. You run outside, your arms and legs free. You hop on your bike. You dig in the sand and play in the park. You feel happy.
With Spring comes a promise, a promise God gave Noah in Genesis 8:22:
While the earth remains,
Seedtime and harvest,
Cold and heat,
Winter and summer
And day and night,
Shall not cease.
All of the earth and its seasons belong to God. Read Psalm 24: 1, 2.
Look in your back yard, on your way to school, in the park.
Write down, or draw, what you see each time you notice some new clue that spring is starting.
Write down the date and what you observe.
Use words that tell how it looks, sounds, or smells.
Make drawings to show what is new or what has changed.
Take note of which birds appear, when and where, how their songs sound.
Check where buds first appear, which flowers bloom, what people are doing differently.
Write something every day even if you think nothing new has happened.
Share your findings.
A publication of the Evangelical Mennonite Conference