This month’s message comes from Tony Green who is a partially retired Lay-Reader
February already!! As I write this the sun is shining over the Somerset countryside, having slept through the coldest night of the winter, with our central heating deciding to pack up. O joy!!!
February can be one of the least favourite months of the year, but it can bring so much to look forward to. The days are starting to show signs of lengthening, the spring flowers are starting to show signs of life. Snowdrops, the well-loved flowers that appear in February, are also known as Candlemas bells and are seen as a symbol of hope. There is an old rhyme which says, “The snowdrop, in purest white array, first rears her head on Candlemas Day.” To me, Snowdrops are proof that there is a God; whatever the weather – rain, shine or several inches of snow - they force their way into the world in February, giving us a clear sign that spring is on its way!
The life-giving sun in winter gives way to spring. It is said that if the weather is fine and frosty at the close of January and the beginning of February, there is more winter ahead than behind. Writing this on a beautiful sunny day towards the end of January, I hope this is not the case this year!
February is also, for the more romantic of us, the month of love, with St Valentines day on the 14th. In St Paul’s letter to the Corinthians the whole of chapter 13 is dedicated to love and ends with these words: “And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three: and the greatest of these is love.” As the popular saying goes – love makes the world go round. But as the passage in Corinthians makes clear God’s love is not just for February 14th, but endures forever.
I end with a poem by Sir Walter Scott entitled ‘Love’:
In peace, love tunes the shepherds reed
In war, he mounts the warriors steed
In halls in gay attire is seen
In hamlets, dances on the green
Love rules the court, the camp, the grove
And men below and saints above
For love is heaven and heaven is love.
Stay warm and enjoy the coming spring season.