Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Renewal



As much as I love to see all the white and pink blossoms on the trees in the springtime, I also LOVE to see new green leaves. Not just because I love the fullness and beauty of the tree when the leaves appear, but also because I love the color of the green. The first week or two of a newly formed leaf is my very favorite. Have you ever noticed the color of green that a new leaf has? It's the most beautiful color of green EVER!! It's bright and vibrant and I can hardly watch the road as I drive because it takes my breath away everytime. As much as I tried to capture it on my camera phone, I just couldn't do it justice.

Today as I was driving around, I was noticing all the new BEAUTIFUL green leaves and then also noticing the leaves that have been green for longer than a week or two and how their colors were not as vibrant or dramatic. I was wondering why that is. Why does the vibrancy of the color fade so quickly?

I think that in so many ways, we are like these leaves. The vibrancy and radiance comes into our lives at certain times and creates perspective, beauty, and hope but then with time, the feelings eventually dull and fade. The newness wears off and renewed desires tend to dull as old habits resurface. I have not only seen this happen in the life of others, but unfortunately, all too often in my own self.

I think that the time in my life when my spirit is the greenest and the most vibrant is right after general conference. There is nothing that compares to the feelings that I have as I sit with my family and completely immerse myself into the words of the Lord's annointed and also into the feelings of the Spirit that rush into my heart.

Lately, as I am doing the dishes and working in the kitchen during the day, I am always looking out my window at my beautiful tulips. I have observed many things about tulips. One of the things that I find the most amazing is that in the morning, after a night of darkness, the tulips are closed and slightly lean to the side. But, as the day goes on and the sun climbs higher and brighter in the sky, the tulips completely change. They stand to their greatest heighth and the flower completely opens itself up to reveal the incredible beauty within. It is such a sight to see. I think that is exactly what happens to me as I immerse myself directly into the "sunbeams" of general conference. My spirit soars as I spiritually stand taller and completely open up my heart in order to let the spirit's light change me from within. The mighty change happens and my color changes to that radiant color of green that symbolizes recommitment, rememberance, rejuvination, and rededication. This same processes happens after I visit the temple and after I leave a spiritually rich sacrament meeting, RS meeting, broadcast, etc.

So why do the colors fade with time? Why does the beautiful green always seem to dull? Because it is not only a process in nature, it is also a part of human nature. It is that part of us that we must continually work at. It is that daily immersion of the scriptures and of the words of apostles and prophets that keep our colors vibrant, our spiritual heights lengthened, and our hearts open. It is the continual process of renewal that brings beauty and radiance to a countenance and hope to a dull and dying world.

3 comments:

Andrea said...

So eloquently put.
I completely agree.

Carrie said...

So true...I have been enjoying Spring so far and I am VERY excited for General Conference too. I love this post. :)

The Allphins said...

I also LOVE that color green. It's one of my favorite colors.

I don't really know much about leaves and the science behind that change that takes place, but I think maybe that bright green is sort of an immature stage for the leaf. Perhaps at that state, the leaf would not be strong enough to endure the heat, cold, wind, and precipitation that it will encounter during its lifetime.

When we first immerse ourselves in conference (or any spiritual high), I agree that we are like those bright green, vibrant leaves. Maybe we too have to transform into that resilient leaf. When we have that spiritual high, although it is exciting and invigorating, it probably isn't enough to weather those storms we will encounter. Look at all those early members of the Church who witnessed the plates themselves, but then fell away, because they didn't make that transformation. We have to take that excitement turn it into action. We have to transform ourselves as a result of what we have heard. Otherwise, that excitement and newness will be for nothing and would simply die.

It may appear that the leaves become dull, but maybe it has actually become stronger and more resilient. Of course that vibrant and pretty phase is completely essential to get to the next phase, but, after all, we are trying to continually progress and improve, not stay in one state.

Anyway, sorry that was so long, but that's what came to my mind.

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