At precisely 5:24 p.m., “the Sun crosses the celestial equator going south to north. It’s called the “celestial” equator because it’s an imaginary line in the sky above the Earth’s equator. Imagine standing on the equator; the Sun would pass directly overhead on its way north.”1
That’s just the fancy way to say that today is the first day of Spring!!!
The event described in the opening statement doesn’t happen at the same time every year. The first day of Spring last year occurred on Sunday, March 20th. However, it happened unbeknownst to any of us just as I was winding down the morning sermon at 11:33 a.m. Next year, it will occur on Tuesday, March 19th at 11:06 p.m. This is all very specific and astronomically timed. And, due to time zone differences, the equinox could occur on the next day in some parts of the world.
Spring is that time of year that makes us feel exceptionally good. With joy, we have stowed away the shovels, sidewalk salt, and snow throwers until Winter rears its ugly head again. Now, we start getting the lawn mower ready and looking forward to that first cutting of grass.
We are getting out of the house after a cold winter and we starting to see signs of life: trees budding, tulip bulbs sprouting, grass greening, and there is a cleanness to the air. The birds have returned and their song can be heard from the trees. It won’t be long before the smell of freshly turned dirt will fill the air as well. City-folks don’t understand this but country-folks sure do. There is something special about the first scent of freshly turned sod.
Finally…FINALLY! It’s light longer! And earlier, too. We are a bunch of sun-lovers, aren’t we?
We also know that this is the time for rain showers. Graciously, the Lord waters the earth, hydrating the winter wheat as well as the flower gardens and grass.
Not surprisingly, with Spring also comes certain feelings of romance. Love is in the air! Solomon felt it, too. Song of Solomon 2:11-14 says, “For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; (12) The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land; (13) The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away. (14) O my dove, that art in the clefts of the rock, in the secret places of the stairs, let me see thy countenance, let me hear thy voice; for sweet is thy voice, and thy countenance is comely.”
The greatest book on romance ever written was the Song of Solomon. The wording is poetic and the desire is strong. The beauty of a loved one’s face and the sound of their voice ought to cause us to renounce all worldly distractions so that we can pursue our love with them.
If this is true in an earthly, human relationship, how much truer should this be with the Lord? No, we don’t typically think of our relationship with Christ in romantic terminology, certainly not in the way we would think of our spouse. However, it is the Lord that calls us His bride and His beloved. He is the Groom. We have been “espoused” to Christ and we are just waiting for the wedding day – and the Marriage Supper of the Lamb.
Our wedding dress is described in Isaiah 61:10. “I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.”
The Lord lavished His love on us; shouldn’t we lavish our love on Him?