April 2023

Spirit Garden Reflections

Spring Awakening

Come with me into the woods.
Where spring is advancing, as it does, no matter what,
not being singular or particular, 
but one of the forever gifts, and certainly visible.

-Mary Oliver

Welcome to the Reflection for April!

More than any other, this season of spring seems to encompass so many stages as the earth awakens from the winter slumber.  This year, perhaps more than some others, I am noticing these stages.  There is the stage that it muddy and mucky as the earth begins to thaw and the weather fluctuates between snow, rain and sunshine.

Currently, we are in the middle phase of spring here in the Maritimes.  The threat of snow has receded and we can be out in the yard cleaning up the dry grass, branches and leaves, clearing the way for new growth and new life.  The trees are just beginning to form their buds and it will be in the month of May that we will begin to truly see and experience the greening of the landscape all around us. 

The season of spring is a time of transition in the outer landscape and the inner landscape as well.  It can take each of us some time to emerge from the season of winter and embrace a season of awakening to the new growth and possibility of spring.

Our Spirit Garden Reflection this month will take you on a walk in the forest and an encounter with the invitation of spring.  I hope you will enjoy it.

Spring Blessings,

Imagination makes two worlds one, or, more specifically,
it speaks from the one world within all worlds,
the eternal dimension deep in every place and time
and at the heart of every people and tradition.

-John Philip Newell, Sacred Earth, Sacred Soul

Awakening Spring

The audio file below offers a reflection that takes you with me on a forest walk during this season of spring.  The reflection is followed by a handout with some questions that are intended to help you journal your own thoughts and experiences around this theme.  Please print these out before you listen to the audio file.

You are invited to create a comfortable space for yourself, perhaps light a candle and make a cup of tea as you take about 20 minutes to listen to the reflection and then answer the questions.  May this be a nourishing and replenishing time of some soul tending.

Reflection Questions

Please click on the button below to download the reflection questions that go along with this reflection for this month.

Pilgrim Poem

In the Reflection, I mentioned the feeling of being a pilgrim walking over some challenging terrain and having tired feet.  Below is a poem called Pilgrim for you to download and read as you close your time of reflection.


Spirit Garden Moments

Spirit Garden Moments offer a short pause in your day and an opportunity for reflection.  Below is a Spirit Garden Moment about Easter morning.

Meeting in the Garden


wild rose

I love the story of Easter morning.  Mary arrives at the tomb and finds it empty.  She turns and mistakes Jesus for the Gardener and is about to ask where her beloved has been taken.  Then when the Gardener speaks, she recognizes that it is Jesus, that he has been transformed into new life.  Jesus says to her, ‘Do not cling to me, but go and tell your brethren that I am risen.’

There is so much that happens in these few short lines.  This Easter, I am drawn to the image of Jesus as the Gardener.  I am not sure why, but it touches my heart.  It is the image of one who knows how to cultivate life by tending to the soil, pruning the shrubs, pulling the weeds, and ensuring that everything in the garden has what it needs to grow and flourish.

This image of the Gardener also holds certain qualities.  I think of the patience that a gardener must have to watch over things as they grow.  A gardener understands that everything grows and blossoms in its own time.  There is patience and attentiveness, a kind of watching over the life of all that is in the garden.

A Gardener implies new life emerging.  I hold onto this image on this Easter morning as it invites each of us to watch for the new life that is emerging within us.

I find it beautiful that Mary’s first impression of the resurrected Jesus is of a Gardener, one who lovingly attends to the life that is flourishing, struggling, and longing to grow.  It reminds me of a poem that I wrote long ago called The Rose Garden.  As you read the poem, may you remember that the rose is a symbol of Mary Magdalene.  This is a poem about a Divine encounter between Mary and Jesus, you and me, and the garden we cultivate together.

With Eastering blessings,

In Closing

On the Celtic wheel of the year, the season of spring is associated with the element of Air.  Air invites us to dream and imagine new possibilities for ourselves and our world.  As these spring days unfold, may you give yourself space to dream and to grow with the new life your soul is inviting you into.

With blossoming blessings,

Kathy by the Ocean

Connect & Share

Please share any comments about this Reflection in the comments below. Make sure to check out what others are posting and encourage each other!