I follow a Facebook page called The Prayer Bench, and this quote was posted today:
"There is a hard truth to be told: before spring becomes beautiful, it is plug ugly, nothing but mud and muck. I have walked in the early spring through fields that will suck your boots off, a world so wet and woeful it makes you yearn for the return of ice. But in that muddy mess, the conditions for rebirth are being created."
~ Parker Palmer
Whether you're religious or not, the idea of rebirth -- being able to be born again after dying to one way of living, after hitting rock bottom, after losing everything and having nothing else to lose -- is such a powerful idea for humanity.
This is what I love about Easter: this story of redemption, this idea that you can die to one way of living and start to live again in a new way, a way that is more your truth, that is more your real self, that is a better version of who you are and who you are meant to be. There is always, always a second chance waiting for us if we are willing to let go of the old, easy way of doing things, and do the hard digging, the kind that gets dirt so deep in the grooves of our fingers and palms that it never washes out, and the hard waiting to see what grows out of that new patch of hope and dreams.
Creating the conditions for rebirth out of a muddy mess.
Easter -- and spring -- are all about new beginnings and potential. I'm not sure if we really find this inside a church sanctuary but you certainly feel this in every cell of your body when you walk through the woods in early spring with the smell of decay in your nose, knowing that with sunshine and patience, that decay -- that muddy mess -- will create green sprigs and buds on the trees and bulbs exploding out of the ground.
The potential for joy is there.