The Seeds of Spring
Winter can be tough, especially for those of us who are growing older. Here in the northern part of the northern hemisphere, snow and ice can often isolate us from our family and friends… and even make trips to the store difficult or impossible.
We may have feelings of darkness and despair. The shorter days and long cold winter nights can make it seem as if the sun will never shine again. The never-ending cloudy, gray skies and barren trees make the world feel bleak and empty. Winter is a season of deep sleep and hibernation. It is a time when nature seems to hold its breath, and the entire northern half of the world anxiously awaits the return of spring and its life-giving warmth and light.
Winter can be a tough time for some of us. It seems the world around us has died. The leaves are gone from the trees, the flowers are dead and decayed, and the fields are eerily barren. Most animals have retreated to their dens and burrows, and the countryside is eerily silent and still. The world appears to be in a state of suspended animation.
But even in the darkness and despair of winter, there is hope. Down deep beneath the still and frozen earth, the seeds of spring are waiting, not dead, but dormant and alive. Each one of those seeds contains within them the promise of spring – the time of growth and renewal. As the days begin to grow longer and the temperature rise, the earth begins to reawaken and life begins to stir. The snow melts, the clouds scatter and allow us to see again the bright blue sky, the sun rises higher in the sky, and the first signs of the reawakening world appear.
Crocuses push their tiny heads through the leftover snow, their bright purple and yellow petals are a beacon of hope in changing landscape. The birds begin to return, filling the air with their songs. The trees begin to bud and the grass begins to green.
Spring is truly a time of joy and renewal. And a reminder too of the natural cycles and cycles of life. As the days grow longer and the temperature rises, the world comes back to life. The flowers bloom, the fields turn green, and the trees leaf out. The animals emerge from their dens and burrows, the countryside comes alive with the sounds of birds, bees, and other creatures. The world is once again teeming with life and energy.
As much as we may despair in the cold, dark, bleak days of winter we should always remember the natural cycle of life. From seed to sprout, growth, and eventual decay, the cycle of a plant’s life is a continuous process. The decomposition of dead plants and animals also plays a crucial role in the ecosystem, providing vital nutrients for the growth of new life.
As much as we look forward to spring here in the cold climes of the northern hemisphere, we should remember how much a part of the wondrous cycle of nature we all are and embrace it, even if it means having to endure a long dark, cold, bleak winter. The dark despair of winter makes spring seem all the brighter and more welcome.
So while it is true that for many winter is a time of darkness and despair, it can also be a time of hope. Instead of letting the bleakness of winter cause us dismay, we can let it serve as a reminder that the beauty and vitality of spring is coming. And as the dark days of winter begin to grow longer and as the temperature rises, the world is reborn, reminding us that no matter how dark and cold the winter may be, spring will come again.