Tuesday, March 20, 2012

equal night

Each morning during our morning circle time, the children are asked the date and the season after we open with a song, poem or verse and end with our Scripture and prayer time. It has become the job of my dutiful nearly-six-year-old son Elias to announce, with full confidence each morning, the current season.

We have been talking for the last few weeks about the change in season approaching and cuing him on how his now rote answer would also change. I think he had become quite bored with announcing the usual, but quite accurate statement that, "It is winter".

Well, today he was delighted to share with our family circle, and perhaps even with the neighborhood, that "IT IS SPRING!" with a shout and a jump off of our sofa (okay, I allowed it today because it was after all a very special announcement)!

According to The Old Farmer's Almanac...
The vernal equinox arrived at 1:14 A.M. (ET) this morning, marking the earliest start to spring in 116 years.
The Sun crosses the celestial equator going northward; it rises due east and sets due west.
The word “equinox” is derived from the Latin for “equal night.” Day and night are each approximately 12 hours long. 
We drew up a small poster that simply said Welcome Spring and discussed the vernal equinox, paying special attention to its Latin meaning (we are currently studying Latin and it is has been exciting and relevant to talk about Latin derivatives this year).

And thus begins my favorite time of year. This time of year holds so much hope, newness and fresh beginnings for me in so many ways. I am energized by the bright and airy days and tend to feel more carefree, yet focused in so many areas of my life.

Feeling drawn to revisit callings that I have since laid to rest.

Feeling a sense of simple, true and vital goals begin to form for myself and my family.

Feeling the strength to overcome the challenges I am being called to move past and having the courage to remain still and patient amidst the ones that I cannot change for the time being.

Trying desperately to be mindful about my intentions and ask myself if they are coming from a place of pride and earthly gain or from an authentic place of love inside of me.

As much as I'd be overjoyed to share that my life is all about joy and order and peaceful purposes and ease of days with every-cheerful children and free time to maintain my sense of individuality while raising and educating my four children I cannot say that it is my reality each and every day.

My life has so very much of those things in them but there are also the struggles. There is a striving each day and I often fall short. I so much desire to take up permanent residence way up high on that glorious, fulfilling mountaintop. But I know that this journey is a series of mountains and valleys along the way.

I am reminded of that quote that so pointedly reminds us that failure is not the falling down, but the staying down.

And as I think of today, the vernal equinox and all that it brings with it, I am reminded that life too is equal parts day and night during some seasons of living.

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