Scripture reminds us that “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flower wilts; but the word of the Lord remains forever” (1 Peter 1:24). So the grass reminds us of our mortality, yet it also is a sign of the promise of Easter. Grass rises up quickly from the moment it is laid in the earth – with its face to the sun and with its green as the color of hope.
Here is an excerpt from the poem “Song of Myself” by Walt Whitman, one of the most influential and all-American of our nation’s poets. Whitman refers to grass as the “hair of graves.” He reflects on all of the men, women, and children who lie buried beneath the grass:
What do you think has become of the young and old men?
And what do you think has become of the women and children?
Yet also in the poem he reflects,
A child said What is the grass? fetching it to me with full hands;
How could I answer the child? I do not know what it is any more than he.
I guess it must be the flag of my disposition,
out of hopeful green stuff woven.
Or I guess it is the handkerchief of the Lord,
A scented gift and remembrancer designedly dropt,
Bearing the owner’s name someway in the corners,
that we may see and remark, and say Whose?
Lent, as it does every year, is coming to an end – and that is a greatly hopeful thing. Lent serves only for a time to prepare us for Easter and the new and eternally lasting life come. So may we be filled with the belief that one day when we are laid to the earth, like the grass of the fields, we will rise quickly with our faces beaming to the Son.
As we reflect on our lives and ask “Whose?” we remember that we belong to God. God grant that our Lenten journey to Easter keep us always on the right and holy path.