I have always loved music. It forms such an important part of my own spirituality. I don’t really have any musical training or experience (except for a rather half-hearted stint at playing the trumpet in middle school), so I often don’t think I have any musical talent. Perhaps I do but I have just not had the opportunity to explore it. I often wish that I had learned to play an instrument well when I was a child. Most of my fellow GOTHs know that one of my strange (and unlikely to be fulfilled) dreams is to be able to play the organ (perhaps I should enlist some help from Nick). For now I will remain just an enthusiastic admirer of music.
I love Easter hymns in particular. There are of course those that most people will recognize and remember as favorites from Easter Sunday, but one of my favorites is a hymn that I don’t think is particularly well know. “Now the green blade riseth” (hymn 204 in The Hymnal 1982) offers some really beautiful imagery for the season of Easter. The first verse reads “Now the green blade riseth from the buried grain, wheat that in dark earth many days has lain; love lives again, that with the dead has been: Love is come again like wheat that springeth green.” I love the plant imagery and the focus on new life. This hymn helps remind me that Easter is the culmination of all the preparation that happened during Lent. As I let go of some things, let them die you might say, during Lent, now at Easter I can see the signs of new life, the signs of resurrection in my own life.
There are many exciting things happening in my life right now. I am in the process of visiting seminaries, and within a few weeks I believe I will know where I will be spending the next three years as I prepare to become a priest in the Episcopal Church. As I prepare to begin this next stage in my journey, I think it is a particularly appropriate time to reflect on those things that I have let go of and those things that I would like to let go of. I am reflecting on all of the things that hold me back from being the full person that God created me to be and that hold me back from fully living into the vocation to which God has called me. It seems that Easter is a particularly appropriate time to be pondering these questions of death and resurrection in my own life. I hope that this holy season provides you the space to do the same.