Sitting on the edge of the bricks, looking out over creation and life is bursting forth. My recent difficulties keep trying to creep back in, but on this morning, creation is singing a song of hope and I am drawn to it. Drawn to its purpose, its life, and its freedom. I conclude that the life I see springing forth is not concerned about the things of yesterday. I make a conscious decision to do the same and join in on life’s song of hope. Life is joyful in the moment; it does not see the death of the past season around it; it chooses to see the new life budding before its eyes- remembering its purpose, busy with the task at hand.
It has not forgotten the great loss or pain of the previous season; how could it? It has become a part of who it is today. Today, it has simply chosen to let it go; to trust in the creator, and in this moment- that is enough.
Kari Jobe sings the song, “The Garden”. She sings of being in a desperate and broken place and how she comes upon a garden that is at the dawn of spring. I will add that to the untrained eye such a garden can appear to be a desolate place. Winter has wrecked havoc, and all that is left behind are shriveled up remnants of the beauty of happier days. But to the one who knows that beauty can come from ashes, and that dry bones can come alive again-that person looks beyond what is seen and looks past the natural. They set their gaze on the Life-Giver!
In almost every circumstance it is that which we set our gaze upon that controls us. In Kari’s song, she sees a hint of life in the ivy that is pushing through the broken wall, pushing up out of last season’s death and up towards the light, and something shifts. No longer does death hold her gaze, she is transfixed on life, and that leads her to its Creator! In the green, she remembers His faithfulness. Winter comes again and again but there is always a spring.
As we begin Holy Week, the week between Palm Sunday and Resurrection Sunday, let us remember that God is like this ivy in this desolate garden. No matter what we have done, No matter what we are facing or feeling, He will reach through every wall we throw up, through the broken, through the dead things, and stop at nothing to bring us back to the light. Restoration and Redemption are all around us. Creation sings its song every day. Yes, there is death but there is also resurrection and this is our hope!
Our pasts and failures do not define us. Death and the grave have no hold on you or me! In John 10:10, Jesus said, “ The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” We belong to the creator. We are who He says we are-Created for a Hope and a Future!
Sing a new song today!