When my kids were younger, we used to really live it up on Groundhog’s day. In the midst of the long, cold days of winter, we would celebrate Feb. 2nd by pretending it was summer. We would crank up the thermostat, wear shorts & flip flops, set up beach umbrellas inside, cook hot dogs on the outdoor grill (more than once in drifts of snow!) and watch the 1979 animated version of Jack Frost starring Pardon-Me-Pete, the groundhog. Good times in the Garner household! Just when it began to feel like the journey through winter may last forever, our Groundhog’s Day celebration was like a refreshing oasis reminding us that spring always follows winter. Always.
Sometimes the somber days of Lent also feel like they will last forever. So that we are not discouraged, however, the Sundays between Ash Wednesday and Easter are not part of the 40 days of Lent. They are considered to be “little Easters” reminding us that we are resurrection people.
In some ways, the Sundays of Lent are a little like mini-Groundhog’s Day celebrations – oases in the desert reminding us that new life awaits. Always. (Whether Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow or not!)
Hallelujah and Happy Groundhog’s Day!