The Japanese Cherry Tree Blossoms are in full bloom today here in Washington, DC. They always make their appearance at the early part of spring. The other trees are just showing the slightest amount of new growth: seemingly fragile reds and greens and yellows are appearing, giving hope for full blown spring to be not far (although we are threatened with an inch of two of snow to hit us overnight).
These early bloomers, the beautiful and very fragile cherry blossoms are a sight to behold, provided we remember to be patient with all the visitors who want to experience the majestic beauty of these trees. These blossoms are a physical reminder that spring is here, but just not yet fully come. Just like Jesus' time in the Gospel today is here....but not just yet. We are in that teasing place, of almost, just not yet.
So much of our lives are spent waiting for that ripe time to arrive. Time can seem to slow down when we are waiting for: a job to materialize; the birth of a child; someone to die who has been in decline. And yet, in a crazy-making way, that time can seem to be so fleeting. Things don't just stop when we are waiting for the fullness of time to make something happen. Life continues to go on all around us: things still need to be done. And things are done, are accomplished, perhaps just not the things for which we are waiting.
Lent is that in-between time, when we are waiting, but we are also doing. Our lives continue while we await an event whose time has not yet fully come. What we do during that time can make far richer those fleeting moments when that for which we wait comes into fruition. The Cherry Blossoms will be gone in the blink of an eye and full spring will be here. They remind us that we are called to live in this moment, while preparing for that which is not yet ready. All of life is like that, and Jesus' life and ministry are examples of living in that tension filled place of waiting and at the same time doing.
Copyright 2011, The Rev. John F. Dwyer,. All Rights Reserved.
Art: Panel 5 of 5: Cherry Blossoms, jfd+ 2010