Time Marches On

Mary Statue Surrounded by Flowers
Recently a young lady in our community named Lisa passed away. She was in her mid-30s, and died of Leukemia. She had two young children and a loving husband. I looked at some of the photos of her at the funeral, and I realized what her maiden name was, and that she had been homecoming Queen at our school in the mid-1980s. I remember looking at old yearbooks when I was younger and seeing her as kind of a symbol of the 1980s, and to know that she is gone is pretty shocking, even though I didn’t know her that well (except in prayer). My dad knew her very well towards the end of her life, as he made many pastoral visits to her home. I know it sounds weird, but since I grew up in the 1980s I kind of hold on to things from that decade in a strange way, and I am not talking about Devo records or paint-speckled sunglasses really. It is hard to put into words.

Mary Statue Surrounded by Flowers 2 It reminded me that time does march on, whether we like it or not. These photos I took symbolize that I think. Summer and Fall give way to winter, but then faithfully moves on to the Spring. C.S. Lewis once said something to the effect that after the resurrection, the world has been in a perpetual state of Spring. We have the promise of new life. They call the later years of our life the "autumn of our life," but we Christians have faith that the autumn and winter are not the end, but that a perpetual Spring awaits. Lisa never got to the autumn of her life, but I guess going from summer to spring works well just fine (with some purification in between of course). I have always imagined heaven in the way the ancient Romans did, as a kind of Elysian Fields. C.S. Lewis in the great divorce, and St. Irenaeus imagined heaven in a similar way. The song "Wild Mountain Thyme" always makes me think of a kind of idealistic afterlife. I know the song is about earthly love, but I believe the words can certainly be applied to heaven.

Oh, the summertime is comin’,
And the trees are sweetly blooming,
Where the wild mountain thyme
Grows around the blooming heather

 

Chorus:
Will ye go, lassie, will ye go?
And we’ll all go together to pick wild mountain thyme
All around the blooming heather.
Will ye go, lassie, will ye go?

I will build my love a bower
By yon pure crystal fountain
And around it I will place
All the flowers of the mountain.

Chorus… 

If my true love e’er should leave me
I would surely find another
Where the wild mountain thyme
Grows around the blooming heather.

Chorus… 
 

Oh, the autumn-time is comin’,
And the leaves are gently falling,
Where the wild mountain thyme
Grows around the blooming heather

Chorus…