Dear Risen Lord disciples:
Alleluia! Christ is risen! He is risen indeed. Alleluia!
Last week I shared a favorite Easter hymn (“Now the Green Blade Rises”) that I have been singing to myself while cycling around Johnson and Morgan county roads. I also wrote that in “this joyful Eastertide,” along with the beauty of spring flowers and redbuds, the color that strikes me the most is green. This week it seems especially that the trees all around us are exploding into new life.
It brings to my mind another favorite hymn, composed by a friend of mine, in which the central image is a tree – the Tree of Life. While it is found in the Holy Baptism section of the ELW hymnal, it really is also a beautiful Easter hymn. I invite you to read it slowly, reflectively. Return to it daily this week. Let Susan Cherwien’s poetry bless you and move you to embrace this blessed spring, this joyful Eastertide:
O Blessed Spring
1 O blessed spring, where word and sign
embrace us into Christ the Vine:
here Christ enjoins each one to be
a branch of this life-giving Tree.
2 Through summer heat of youthful years,
uncertain faith, rebellious tears,
sustained by Christ's infusing rain,
the boughs will shout for joy again.
3 When autumn cools and youth is cold,
when limbs their heavy harvest hold,
then through us, warm, the Christ will move
with gifts of beauty, wisdom, love.
4 As winter comes, as winters must,
we breathe our last, return to dust;
still held in Christ, our souls take wing
and trust the promise of the spring.
5 Christ, holy Vine, Christ, living Tree,
be praised for this blest mystery:
that word and water thus revive
and join us to your Tree of Life.
Let the trees around you bring to your mind the Risen Lord, Christ the Vine, Christ the Living Tree.
A joyful Eastertide to you – be well, friends. You are loved.
Pr. Dave Schreiber