Musical Monday

Musical Monday

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Now the Green Blade Riseth

(The Hymnal, 204)

Now the green blade riseth, from the buried grain,
Wheat that in dark earth many days has lain;
Love lives again, that with the dead has been:
Love is come again like wheat that springeth green.

In the grave they laid Him, Love whom hate had slain,
Thinking that never he would awake again,
Laid in the earth like grain that sleeps unseen:
Love is come again like wheat that springeth green.

Forth He came at Easter, like the risen grain,
He who for three days in the grave had lain;
Quick from the dead my risen Lord is seen:
Love is come again like wheat that springeth green.

When our hearts are wintry, grieving, or in pain,
Thy touch can call us back to life again,
Fields of our hearts that dead and bare have been:
Love is come again like wheat that springeth green.


Right about when Lent begins, we are so sick of winter here in Central Ohio. By that time, we are usually done with snow. Everything is dull, drab, and gray. The temperature is changeable, wintry one day, and spring-like the next. We are longing for green! Lent is perfectly placed in the year for the Midwest. We look at the places where we know the bulbs are buried in disbelief that tulips and daffodils will soon show their yellows and pinks. The creeping phlox still just looks like a tangle of vines.

Every year I plan on a Lent full of prayer and study. I look to tame my unruly appetites. I want to put God first before food, shopping, and social media. I want to be a better, wife, mom, friend, and pharmacist. I want to be mindful of the words that come out of my mouth and the attitudes that come out of my heart. I long to become my very best self, the person God has created me to be.

My ability to live a holy Lent is as changeable as the temperature. There are times of grace, where prayer and study lead to insights that stir my soul. There are other times when I eat peanut butter straight out of the jar. Sometimes, I open my mouth, and my words are “seasoned with salt” (Colossians 4:6). At others, I curse those made in God’s image (James 3:9).

The ghosts of sins, past, present, and future haunt me. It happens every year. Why should I bother to seek God this way when I know that it’s always two steps forward and one and half steps back? Why bother with spiritual disciplines knowing that the field of my heart is dead and bare? I am accused and found guilty. I am unable to do the good I long to do. I am angry at my own frustration (Book of Common Prayer, p. 268). I am unable to be the person God has created me to be.

Then Jesus reminds me, “Very truly, I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains just a single grain; but if it dies, it bears much fruit” (John 12:24). The accuser is going to accuse. The accuser is not that smart though. The accuser wants my death, forgetting that my death is my womb of new life.

I look for signs of life around my yard. As the plants start poking green from the ground, I sing them this Easter carol.

Listen to the Musical Mondays/Season of Easter playlist: Spotify and YouTube.

— Kristen Fout

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