Not far from my house is a small man-made lake which is a favourite spot for hikers and walkers. Nestled in a forest made up of some older growth trees and some newer trees, it always provides a peaceful, relaxing environment for walking, even when the weather is not good. It is an easy 6km walk around the lake with few hills or climbs. Nonetheless, I still salute those moms who walk their little ones in strollers around the lake.
This week, the last week of March, we noticed a turtle had made his way out of the mud and out onto a log. This was a sure sign that Spring had truly begun. Though the breeze was crisp, and clouds covered most of the sky, when we walked into a patch of sunshine it was delightful. I suspect that is what the turtle thought as well.
Of course there have been all kinds of signs that we are deep into the season of Spring, from the beautiful daffodils blooming throughout the city to the delicate cherry blossoms gracing the trees along our roadways. The friendly chirping of the birds to wake us each morning tells us warmer weather has arrived. The signs are all around us: Spring is here!
This has been a season of signs in the spiritual realm as well. In Matthew 24 Jesus spoke of some of the signs that would indicate his coming back was near. Among those signs were “wars and rumours of wars” and “nations will rise against nations, and kingdoms against kingdoms” (verses 6 & 7). We see this once again in our world today. As we watch the conflict in Ukraine unfold we cannot help but think, “Is this it, Lord? Is this the time of your return?”
Scripture also tells us that no man knows the day or the hour, so as we see these signs, may we be living in such a way that if Jesus returned today, or in ten years, we would be ready. As the Apostle Peter writes, “So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him.” (2 Peter 3:14) Good advice for any season, wouldn’t you say?
– Pastor Gary