I stand at the window, trying to distinguish the clouds from the rain. Because surely there's a place where gray rain and gray clouds can accentuate one another. Become separate and distinct. But that place doesn't appear until it's too late: a darkened forest backdrop highlights the shape of rain just before it meets the ground.
Across the yard, across the street, the last of the white blossoms on a tree have given way to timid green. The rest of the world is still shades of brown with lifelessness, but the tree is stretching out quietly. And on its flimsy upper branches, a scarlet cardinal sits in silence. He does not meld into the clouds. He is not hidden within the leaves. He is startling and impossible in the gloom of the day. His feathers must be entirely soaked. A blanket of heaviness, forcing him to rest.
I look closer, squinting through sheets of clouded air. I expect him to ruffle and bluster, to insulate himself against the wetness falling all around. But he is upright and impervious. Sleek.
Then, I smile. He has started singing.
Who cheer! who cheer! whee, whee, whee, whee --
I would swear that he enjoys the gray rain. He is still perched there when I become bored and walk away. Back into the boisterous life of a house full of children. Nothing gray about that.
On the fourth day, I guard my eyes from the sunrise. It peeks over the eastern hill, streaking a horizontal spotlight onto the trees behind my bedroom window. At first, it is only the treetops that are bathed in the glow. Slowly, the minutes pass and the glow falls, touching the high and the low alike -- the world is awake.
But for all the beauty of the watery light, it is not the sky or the sun that has made me pause.
It is the green.
The clovered floor before the forest, the spring bulbs shooting blades high, the carpet of green speckled with tiny purple and white flowers, the blush of lime over all but the most stalwart of oaken varieties -- it is the green.
While I wallowed and moaned, the world was changing colors.
Perhaps the cardinal knew it. Saw the beauty in the green-nourishing gray.
I breathe in the lush promise of spring. It is here.
We're seeing the Bigger Picture through simple moments -- moments that force us to stop and take notice of the ways our worlds are important, meaningful, and beautiful. Please join us at Jade's place today! Grab the button, link up, and read a few others to encourage them as they walk this journey of intentional living.