Friday, March 6, 2009

March Madness in the life of Carol Steward

March in Colorado is definitely known for wacky weather. Spring one minute, snow the next. Wind all the time, through either spring heat (not to rub it in to you in the north, but we had 76 degrees yesterday) or wintry blizzards. This is typically our snowiest month, with April trailing close behind. This is not looking to be our snowiest year, which leaves us dry, dusty, and maddeningly fearful of wildfires. We've had four large fires already on the front ranges of the state.

March also brings spring, a time of longer daylight (whoohoo) and growth. With even a hint of moisture, bulbs peek out from the dried leaves of fall. Green grass starts to poke out from the brittle brown blades of winter. The trees are teased into letting the buds of new fruit out of their branches. (waiting in suspense, to see if we'll get another May blizzard to freeze the blooms of fruit trees.) And the madness of yardwork looms like a maniac just around the corner. In spite of that, I love spring.

I'm not sure, besides rolling off the tongue nicely and making a nifty name for the basketball playoffs, where the name March Madness really came from. I'm sure I could google it, but in my life, it indicates a time of change. Hurrying to get organized. Get the spring cleaning done. (No, it's not the same as it was in my mother's day, but it's still something I feel obligated to try to do.) Now I call it clearing the clutter - of winter, of a deadline, of well recouperation – from any of the overly stressful stages of life, and get ready for the next.

Families with young children are getting ready for the change in sports. Kids are in the parks practicing soccer, and baseball, and teen-age girls can be found in bikinis soaking up the sun. My motherly madness used to include cleaning the yard so it was ready for the kids to play right here at home. Packing for spring break to Grandma's mountain cabin, where we could move from spring back to winter in the matter of hours. Shopping for new clothes that the kids really can't wear until May because of the weather, but need because they grew 6 inches in the last weeks of winter. Oh, and I especially stressed over buying our "Easter dress," which always required snow boots rather than sandals and a down coat over it. Four years ago, it included the excitement of preparing for my daughter's wedding. (Happy Anniversary Sarah and Robert!) March Madness. That it is.

As a Christian, I love spring and getting ready for Easter. I love the reminder that God had all of this planned out for us an eternity ago. And has it all planned out for an eternity to come. I love that He knows we're going to make mistakes, and He loves us anyway. I love knowing that a fresh start is just a prayer away. After the bleek and sometimes bitter "rest" of winter, God gave us spring, in all it's glory to blow in and give us new hope for a fresh start. Growth and change. What will March Madness bring to your life this year?

No comments: