693. Once more to new creation, awake, and death gainsay, for death is swallowed up of life, and Christ is risen today! ~George Newell Lovejoy

Angels, roll the rock away;
Death, yield up thy mighty prey:
See, He rises from the tomb,
Glowing with immortal bloom.
~Rev. Thomas Scott

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It is by the blood of Christ’s “immortal bloom” that we are washed clean and saved. Should we invite him into our hearts, His body and blood, the “bread of life,” will feed our souls while the Father’s Creation continues to provide the “bread” or “manna” that nourishes our physical bodies. We are invited guests at the Lord’s lavish table, and whilst we partake of His feasts, we are lovingly watched over by the Holiest of Holies. A supreme sacrifice has been made for our presence at this table on which our sustenance and salvation have been laid; our very presence at the banquet is a holy blessing, a gift from God in whose image we are made. So it is fitting and right that we spend every day and each meal in awe and wonder and praise of our Savior, Jesus. All our days are wondrous new invitations to grow into the fullness of our potential, and the privilege to do so was paid for by the Messiah’s immeasurable agony. Christ is Risen! Praise be to God! Happy Easter!

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ~John 1:1-5   ✝

**Images via Pinterest, collage by Natalie

692. Could life so end, half told; its school so fail? Soul, soul, there is a sequel to thy tale! ~Robert Mowry Bell

See the land, her Easter keeping,
Rises as her Maker rose.
Seeds, so long in darkness sleeping,
Burst at last from winter snows.
Earth with heaven above rejoices…
~Charles Kingsley

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These realities, of which Kingsley speaks, are meant to stir in humanity an ancient sense of belonging and in turn spark a desire to seek Yahweh, the Ancient of Days, but should they not, finding God in Christ is something even the blind can do. Our Creator sent us His son over 2000 years ago to be our memory and remind us of who we are and to whom we belong. Jesus is a revelation of our loving Father, of His amazing Grace, and of His Kingdom’s intention. And as the Messiah, Christ offers mortals, all of whom are subjected to detrimental temptation by malevolent forces in a fallen world, salvation, and then He, as their spiritual leader, directs those, who accept His offer, into righteous rhythms of life, into a willingness to serve others, and into the dance of life–a dance in which the whole universe can be seen as a partner.

“Easter is not a time for groping through dusty, musty tomes or tombs to disprove spontaneous generation or even to prove life eternal.  It is a day to fan the ashes of dead hope, a day to banish doubts and seek the slopes where the sun is rising, to revel in the faith which transports us out of ourselves and the dead past into the vast and inviting unknown.”  ~Author unknown, as quoted in the Lewiston Tribune

…fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ~Hebrews 12:2 ✝

**Images via Pinterest, collage by Natalie

690. The world of Celtic spirituality is completely at home with the rhythm and wisdom of the senses. ~John O’Donohue

When you read Celtic nature poetry,
you see that all the senses are alerted:
You hear the sound of the winds,
you taste the fruits, and above all
you get a wonderful sense of
how nature touches human presence.
~John O’Donohue

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Nature isn’t just around us like the walls of a house or a building; it moves into our space and through our senses to touch us in very discernible ways. We live and breath and move on divine, holy ground and in that realm many of our life experiences come by means of our God-given senses. Even in the reading of Scripture spring’s coming is announced by the mouth in song and the ear in hearing. So this week as we approach Easter, be mindful that one should not only hear about Christ’s resurrection or see images of what happened on the Cross at Calvary, but we should also feel the agony He suffered and in a very real sense “taste” what His sacrifice accomplished.

May your body be blessed.
May your realize that your body is a faithful
and beautiful friend of your soul.
And may you be peaceful and joyful
and recognize that your senses are sacred thresholds.
May you realize that holiness is mindful,
gazing, feeling, hearing, and touching.
May your senses gather you and bring you home.
May your senses always enable you to celebrate
the universe and the mystery and
possibilities in your presence here. . .
~John O’Donohue

The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God. ~Isaiah 35:1-2   ✝

**Images via Pinterest, collage created by Natalie

343. Christ is risen! — Ye sleeping buds, break. Open your green cerements, and wake to fragrant blossoming for His sweet sake. ~Margaret French Patton


See the land, her Easter keeping
Rises as her Maker rose.
Seeds, so long in darkness sleeping,
Burst at last from winter snows.
Earth with heaven above rejoices
Fields and gardens hail the spring;
Shaughs and woodlands ring with voices,
While the birds build and sing.

You, to whom your Maker granted
Powers to those sweet birds unknown,
Use the craft by God implanted;
Use the reason not your own.
Here, while heaven and earth rejoices,
Each his Easter tribute bring –
Work of fingers, chant of voices,
Like the birds who build and sing.
~Charles Kingsley


On a faraway spring morning, in a remote corner of the Roman empire, soldiers crucified a Galilean Jew known as Jesus of Nazareth. ~Colin J. Humphreys

This Nazarene, Jesus, had no servants, yet they called Him Master.
He had no degree, yet they called Him Teacher.
He had no medicines, yet they called Him Healer.
He had no army, yet kings feared Him.
He won no military battles, yet He conquered death.
He committed no crime, yet He was crucified.
He was buried in a tomb, yet He lives today.

“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him.” ~Mark 16:6


Thank you, Lord Jesus, that you save, you heal, you restore, and you reveal Your Father’s heart to us! You have captured me with grace and I’m caught in Your infinite embrace!

313. And if tonight my soul may find her peace in sleep, and sink in good oblivion, and in the morning wake like a new-opened flower then I have dipped again in God, and new-created. ~Excerpt from a poem by D. H. Lawrence

The last fling of winter is over…
The earth, the soil itself,
has a dreaming quality about it.
It is warm now to the touch;
it has come alive;
it hides secrets that in a moment,
in a little while, it will tell.
~Donald Culross Peattie


In winter the earth sleeps peacefully and sinks “in good oblivion” as it readies itself for another spring.  Then morning after morning upon arrival of the vernal equinox, the “new-opened flowers dipped again in God, ” as it were, appear.  It seems to me to be the same for us in the changing seasons of our lives for we, too, are dipped again in God whenever we are “new-created” for the next phase of our lives.

“…then I must know that still I am in the hands of the unknown God,
He is breaking me down to His own oblivion
to send me forth on a new morning, a new man.”
~Excerpt from same poem by D. H. Lawrence

In early civilizations the fact that food supplies were soon to be restored was one of the reasons spring’s coming was especially revered.  Later on it became significant with the spread of Christianity because Easter falls on the first Sunday after the full moon that follows the vernal equinox.  Thus springtime reveals the hidden secrets of the soil, and the risen Christ reveals the secrets hidden in our souls if we but follow Him and listen.

The secret things belong to the Lord, our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.  ~Deuteronomy 29:29   ✝