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New Sprengland

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again:

Is there anything more beautiful than springtime in Boston?

NO. NO THERE IS NOT.

After months of desolate, slushy, misery, Bostonians emerge in springtime with a newfound vigor, accompanied by a rare and short-lived friendliness. It’s probably the only time of year you will be greeted by pedestrians or respected by drivers. The trees are blooming in the Public Gardens, the roofdecks at Whiskey Priest and ABG are filled to the brim and hordes of women in neon spandex jog around and around Castle Island. Sun reflecting off the water. Sun reflecting off the John Hancock. Sun reflecting off of brick.

It. Is. Glorious.

Am I the only person who gets that heaviness in my gut, that choke in my throat, in the face of beauty? Vermont foliage, Swiss alps, cherry blossoms, Nantucket sunsets, Southie sunrises – we leave in a marvelous world. And what an indulgent, good, good Father who created it so. He could have made it black and white and bare and functional. Just the cogs and spokes to get us through the day. But for some wonderful reason, he lavished on all of that goodness.

 

And seriously, for what reason?

I think it’s a clue.

At the end of The Last Battle,(yes, another Narnia reference. Let’s keep moving) when Narnia is destroyed and the children end up in what I suppose is C.S.Lewis’ interpretation of Heaven, the children start to notice that their afterlife looks eerily similar to Narnia. The unicorn says something that I have explicitly instructed to be read at my funeral, while an urban choir belts it out in the background:

I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now. The reason why we loved the Old Narnia is that it sometimes looked a little like this…

And doesn’t that just thrill you and put you at ease, all at once? The notion that the beauty we love here on earth moves us so because it’s a foreshadowing, a glimpse at what’s to come? That the Hawaiian breezes and the vocal harmonies and the joy of chicken wings and Boston in the spring are just a blurry peek at Heaven?

So strap on your neon shoes and get out there, kids. Take a walk or a bike or a run or a ‘board and soak it all up. What a gift, what a glory, what a good, good God.

 

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