Every morning and in the evenings when I can, you can find me sitting out on our back patio swing to watch the dogs play and hear the birds sing. It’s stunning, really. The robins are nearly constant in song from sunrise to sunset. The finches are building nests and I watch them quickly grab a string or stick from the yard before our two dogs dart towards them. Then, there is the occasional cardinal in the splendor of bright red feathers. We’ve got 9 different herbs this year and even a Meyer lemon tree with fragrant flowers. It’s my own little resting place.
As I type and swing, I know that pretty soon the sneezing will begin and my eyes will itch. It’s worth it, though, to have such beauty to enjoy. It’s seems like that’s the way of life. So much beauty in the midst of annoyances (like my allergies) and heartaches difficult to even speak aloud. We’ve just walked through the season of Lent with Holy Week and Good Friday’s death of Jesus. We woke up Easter Sunday singing “He is Risen.” (Ok, so maybe only I did that.) Death does not get the last word in the life of Jesus or in our lives. God’s outstretched hand of love is offered to us over and over again inviting us into the beauty of this life and the next.
It’s hard to focus on that beauty and life when the annoyances and heartaches cloud our vision. Eventually, sitting out here on the patio, I may get a headache from pollen. My eyes will itch. I should sneeze any second now. Those things will not get the best of me or the last word about the time I spend out here. I choose to celebrate the beauty. What do you let have the last word in your life?
My spiritual practice this Eastertide (the time in the church year between Easter and Pentecost) is to watch what I am saying about my life. I will be listening to how I talk about my everyday life in terms of Good Friday or in terms of Easter. Will I let the annoyances and even heartache have the final word or the beauty and meaning of Easter morning speak?