Have you ever had one of those moments where you just get the feeling that something has been set in motion? Where you can't quite put your finger on it, but it feels like the wind is blowing, and not just the wind of spring weather, but the unexpected rush of the Spirit (the ruach, if you will)? From the time I awoke to the time I stepped into the office today, my morning was filled with strange things, beautiful things, and even strangely beautiful things.
My day began in the flat-out strange category. I woke up remembering strange dreams and strange half-awake thoughts that had happened to me overnight. But even stranger than that was the fact that I awoke with "Yatta" stuck in my head. Seriously, if you take the risk of following this link and watching the video,you will understand just how STRANGE it was to have this rattling around in my head. It's a relic from college, when some great and hilarious guys would send out a "Wednesday Nonesense" email each week, with a link to something strange, silly, or bizarrely humorous. Yatta was one of these. Waking up with it stuck in my head was weird and silly, but also a nice reminder of old friends, and a nice catalyst for nostalgia about people, places and memories from many years ago. Yatta is strange...but it definitely put me in a good mood.
As I was driving along Chicago Avenue today, entering the residential corridor of historic houses leading up to North Central College and downtown Naperville, the weather was having an internal conflict. It could not decide whether to be sunny or cloudy. Ahead of me, to the west, storm clouds filled the sky, corner to corner. All was deep gray facing forward.
But behind me, the sun was shining, and shining brightly. The sides of the street were lined with yellow flowering trees that have sprung into bloom with all of the rain we've had recently. These yellow flowers caught the sunlight and glowed up against the background of dark gray clouds, pulling out the blue and green undertones in the sky. The stormy/glowing contrast was spectacular. It was a strange combination of sun and storm, light and shadow, brightness and dark. And in all of its strangeness, it was the most beautiful thing I've seen in a long while.
By the time I wound my way through downtown Naperville, the wind had set the sky in motion, and the odd combination of sun and clouds had dissolved into a cold, flat, overcast sky. But even without the glow of the sun, I noticed that the rainy weeks had set all of downtown into bloom. The trees that all winter had been budding with white Christmas lights were now budding with white and pink and yellow flowers. Even if it doesn't feel like spring, even if the sun has been shy, even if the rain has been a cold rain rather than a warm one, the trees betray the fact that spring is indeed here.
Not only the trees, but the tulips that were planted along the river and throughout the Riverwalk. I hadn't noticed until today that they had been planted. A foil for the dreary day, they were bright and colorful, full of life and hope and joy.
As I looked around a world in bloom, a world thriving and being nurtured by the rain-filled sky, and as I drove, feeling the wind pull my car back and forth, hearing that stupid Yatta song running on repeat in my brain...
...I think I heard a still-small voice.
It said, "things are on the move."
It wasn't an ominous voice. It wasn't a happy-go-lucky voice. It was a serious voice, full of hope. It was a voice that felt neither optimistic nor pessimistic...it just felt true.
I have no idea what these "things" are that are on the move. I feel a little silly for even talking like this, as if I'm claiming any powers of premonition or providence. But there was no doubt in my heart that there was something stirring.
On this morning of strange beauty, I look forward to whatever strange beauty lies ahead, being carried along on the wind of the spirit.