Hope After Winter

At this time last year, we were freefalling into an unscheduled “winter”.  The world shut down under a blanket of fear. We stayed inside, having been told an endless blizzard raged. It was spring, but we were deaf to the birds’ chatter.  Flowers bloomed, but we took no notice. The icy edge of “What will happen tomorrow?” kept us frozen with tension. 

In the cold, hard winds of 2020’s long “winter”, my uncle died. In the middle of the storm, my grandma passed on.  I lost my job. People were getting ill. Government was overstepping its bounds. Soon, bad news wasn’t balanced with good. Schools closed their doors. Election results were unreliable. Riots and looting and hatred and inane ideologies reared up, ugly like sin. 

I took long walks. One day in April, as the world went crazy, I chanced to find a goose nesting on a concrete bridge pillar. She looked at me warningly. I thrilled at the prospect of new life coming amidst all the heartache and disappointment.  Every other day or so I’d walk the mile and a half to check on her.  She was ever vigilant. I looked forward to seeing her, and surmised her eggs would hatch around Easter.  New life would come as we celebrated His life. 

One or two days after Easter I walked again to see the goose, hoping the goslings had arrived.  They had! I beamed with joy. I had no way to tell for sure, but convinced myself they were born on Easter. One small head poked up through the mother goose’s wings.  I watched for a while, then headed for home with a spring in my step.

The next day I was eager to go watch the goslings.

When I peered over the bridge railing, I gasped.  Only feathers and crushed eggshell remained. I whirled my head around and strained my ears.  I looked up and down the river. No sign of geese anywhere! My heart split like the eggshells.

Why did this, on top of everything else, have to happen? I mean really?!

I could not bear 2020’s “winter”, nor the lingering of it into 2021, without hope. I have a hope with me no matter the season; a living hope, a hope after winter and an enduring hope for all time. And His name is Jesus. 

He is risen.  

He is risen indeed! 

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