Saturday, March 4, 2017

There's always an Easter snap...

Years ago, Steve and I were visiting Savanah. We planned our trip in early spring thinking the weather would be perfect during our stay. Warm days, cool nights were predicted and we packed accordingly. We arrived to absolutely beautiful weather and enjoyed our first sunny, spring day in this quaint city.

Unfortunately, the following days, our luck didn’t hold as a cold front blew in. The temperature dropped and the rains started. Freezing, as we hadn’t packed appropriate clothing, we sat huddled by a fireplace for lunch on our second day. Our waitress, a lovely older Southern woman, was gracious in every way. I questioned her about the unseasonable cold weather and her reply was without hesitation. “Oh, darlin girl, it’s the Eastaah snap. Here in Savanah, everyone knows we always have an Eastaah snap! Don’t worry, it won’t be long before the good comes back!”

This year, our unpredictably warm San Antonio winter weather has caused Mountain Laurels to bloom early, right along side budding red bud trees and rose bushes busting out in full bloom. Bluebonnets are beginning to appear, sprinkling the hill country and spring green is peeking out from its winter hiatus, all of this weeks earlier than anticipated. 

My yard is a mess, as it continues to be “under construction,” still, I was getting antsy to get out and begin planting geraniums, bougainvillea, roses and more that will bring some color into my little space. I have waited and waited these long, almost summer like days for the unpredictable "Easter Snap" to roll in and erase the beautiful bursts of color enabled by this unprecedented warm weather. To-date, Punxsutawney Phil is proving to be very unreliable and so wrong, he saw his shadow, malarkey!  As my middle name is Impatience, I bit the bullet yesterday, thumbed my nose at Phil’s forecasting, went against my own good judgement and began planting geraniums and petunias…I simply couldn’t help myself.

As I dug into that warm dark soil, I started thinking how life is much like an Easter snap. I try to predict the unpredictable, wanting to know the unknown, trying to map out  days, weeks, months and years…and, before I know it, here comes that dreaded Easter snap and suddenly, the blooms are off the rose…at least, for a little while.

Today, March 4th, would have been Steve’s and my 22nd wedding anniversary. Eight years ago we were making plans for all types of future events. Our bucket list was never ending as we looked forward to a lifetime of trips and grandchildren and enjoying life together. That Easter snap hit us so unexpectedly and sooner than we could have imagined, March 4th would forever take on an entirely new meaning.

Carefully placing my newly purchased geraniums in the ground, my thoughts turned to Christ’s trial and crucifixion. The Easter snap certainly came unexpectedly to his followers. Imagine as his disciples, his friends and his own mother witnessed Christ’s final days. All of the unforeseen and unknown took them surprisingly off guard. That Easter snap was no little cold front, it crashed down on them like a blinding blizzard and their lives changed forever.

Have you ever been invited into a world you didn’t expect? A world that seemed to have turned upside down? A time when you thought those dark, dreary days of winter were behind you, only to be met with the unpredicted, the unexpected, the unwanted? 

I keep remembering the last words of that lovely Southern waitress. “This ole Eastaah snap won’t last long before the good comes back.” 

Time and life do have a way of leaving winter behind with spring bringing new life, new color, new freshness. While I will no longer be able to share the joy of this anniversary with Steve, I have found there is joy in all the March 4ths that preceded it and the loveliest gift, my memories of this anniversary will always be in full bloom in my mind’s eye. 

Sure we will all have our days of dark uncertainties, those days when the unpredicted Easter snap comes along and yanks us out of our comfortable skin, but there's good news, the promise of Easter morning, the promise of new life, new beginnings and unbelievable eternal joy. “Don’t worry, it won’t be long before the good comes back!”

For what it’s worth,

Romans 6:4 “…just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”

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