Praying for Spring

Just when she thought winter would never end, God sent a sweet sign of spring.

By Marian Westra, Marshall, Michigan

As appeared in

Just another dreary March day, I thought, looking out the kitchen window. Not a bit of color. No hint that spring might arrive soon. And it had been a long, long winter.

My husband, Raymond, was sitting at the table in his wheelchair while I cleaned up after our breakfast. “Are you the lady who’s keeping me here?” Raymond asked in a testy voice from behind me. “I want to go home.”

I turned from the window and walked over to him. “You are home, honey,” I said, patting his shoulder.

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This may have been the toughest year of our 62-year marriage. Raymond had grown so feeble he could no longer walk, and it took all of my strength to help him in and out of the wheelchair.

What was even harder, though, was his worsening dementia. Time and again he’d ask me who I was or where he was. It exhausted me physically and emotionally. I’d prayed a lot about our situation, but lately I felt as though God weren’t really listening. He seemed just out of reach. I’m at my wit’s end, Lord, I prayed. Please give me a sign of spring to show me you hear my prayers...something.

I finished the dishes and wheeled Raymond into the living room. He liked to sit in the soft ruby-colored chair by the picture window and watch our neighbors go about their day. I settled him in the chair before I opened up the drapes completely.

Suddenly his eyes lit up. I turned to look through the crack in the curtain to see what had caught his attention. A robin sitting in the branches of the tree, a respite of red against the grayness. Maybe God was listening. Then I pulled open the drapes.

That’s when I saw it. There on the lawn with its patches of grimy snow were hundreds of robins. It was a blanket of red from our driveway all the way down to the street!

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