Robins Suddenly

             It was like a seasonal switch was thrown on March 6 of this year. After the second coldest February on record for Chicago, and (I believe) the coldest for our nearest airport in DeKalb, we recorded our final below-zero day that day (-6) and went all the way up to 24. For the 11 days since then the weather has been dry, mostly sunny, not that windy, and beautifully warm. Yesterday it was all the way up to a May-like 75.

            Another switch must have been thrown today. As I took our (now count them) eight Border Collies around the hay field, I noticed two wonders: little alfalfa shoots were noticeably an awakening shade of green, and a swarm of at least 50 Robins were flitting from the trees and searching for earthworms. Yesterday, none. Today, a flock, dancing in the green on St. Patrick’s Day!

            What an Alleluia-time these past 11 days have been! Instead of groans and shrugs when you ask people “How’s things?” you get smiles and sweetness and even a noticeable spirit of gratitude.  

            Of course we haven’t even reached the “cruelest month” yet. There can still be frost and ice and ripping wind. But the Robins are with us now. We are strong now. We are survivors now. The days are longer now; and we are ready.

About John

John is a retired pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America who has served congregations for over 40 years, including in rural, suburban, campus ministry and urban settings. His love of Border Collie sheepdogs has been fortified by his many friendships with shepherds all around the world. Nothing he has ever or will ever accomplish is as significant as the patience God, his wife and his friends have shown in putting up with his deficiencies.
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