My redbud tree is blooming.

Redbud 1It does every year at this time. As the days grow longer, the grass greener, the wind warmer, I see magenta-pink little buds dotting the brittle gray branches. And I’m comforted by the rhythm of seasons.

The dramatic seasonal changes in Indiana have taught me much about living and dying … and coming back to life. Spring, especially, reveals that the grave is not the end.

And bare branches blooming have taught me that no matter how bleak the winter, life stirs just below the surface.

Redbud 2 The change in seasons marches with regularity, like a predictable timepiece — not enough to set a watch by, but surely enough to develop a certain level of expectation. And somehow all the players in nature follow the plan — the robins, the grass, the buds — they all follow the score like a finely-tuned orchestra poised to strike the first note.

Somehow, I’ve also come to expect that when I make plans that seem to line up with what God is doing in and around me, they should unfold predictably — like I expect them to. Evidently, God doesn’t have the same expectation.

Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. (Is. 40:28)

Until recently, I assumed my plans and dreams were God’s plans and dreams for me — only that God’s were bigger and better (of course) because he has a better perspective. I didn’t think God’s plans for me would include grief and disappointment and darkness. So much winter.

Turns out, God’s plans are completely different than mine. Unsearchable, unquantifiable, unpredictable. Turns out, he’s asking me to know that he is still good even in the middle of night.

Oh redbud tree, teach me to bloom when my bark is stark and stretched from harsh winter freezes. Teach me to respond to the Son even when everything around me is fragile and dormant. And redbud tree, teach me to dance in the music of life rather than become entangled in the cords of death.

You’ve shown me life like that, redbud. You and Jesus. Yes, Jesus has shown me how to live that way, too.

Looking to Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the sake of the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, disregarding its shame, and has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such hostility against himself from sinners, so that you may not grow weary or lose heart. (Heb. 12:2-3)

Redbud 3

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About Julie

Julie is a wife, mother, daughter, friend, and friend of Jesus. She loves good food, a good book, and talking with good friends late into the night. She admits that she's a huge fan of her husband and her three boys. Her house is filled with their music, legos, books, and artwork. So, if you ever stop by, you're liable to experience all of it.

5 thoughts on “Redbuds

  1. Again, you have stole my heart about the redbud. Such a wonderful
    description of spring. Yes, tomorrow comes the morning and spring. Love your

  2. I love the redbud trees. Mine blooms a little later than yours because it’s in a somewhat shaded spot and just takes its own sweet time. But when it does finally burst into bloom, I’m so happy to look out my window. I planted the tree too close to the house, so it completely fills the window from spring through fall, blocking the view to anything else but its own light lavender spring color and then bright green leaves that deepen and then change to yellow, I think. Anyway, I live with the redbud tree as a visual centerpiece, and it certainly does follow its own rhythm.

    One year, my brother and husband hid eggs for an egg hunt here at the house, and the tree was blooming that Easter, just a little, and one of the men balanced a colorful egg in the crook of two branches, that point where they meet and could host an oval plastic egg. That surprise made me laugh. I snapped a photo.

    Keep your eyes open for colorful surprises, for grace, for a bit of laughter.

  3. Your words are always so insightful and uplifting. Even when they speak of pain and grief. I’m so glad you keep focusing on Jesus and showing those of us who read your words that He is the One we need – especially when our world seems to be falling apart. Can’t wait to see your red bud tree.

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