Olivia Newport sneezing photoSpring allergies are smacking me in the face right now.

Hard. Relentless. Merciless.

I would take a deep breath if it were physically possible.

Sometimes the most mundane things can knock you off your feet, literally and figuratively. Cough, sneeze, blow, sigh.

So I’ve pulled out medications that I don’t need over the winter, and things will come under control. Perhaps not soon enough to suit me, but I’ll get there. In the meantime, I offer these reflections.

1. The bad comes with the good. Spring temperatures and winds shovel tree pollens into my sinus cavities, but they also carry sunshine and 70-degree days. And I love that. They bring the promise of long summer days (but you can forget about lazy!) and I love that too.

2. Seasons come and go. Whether my aggravating congestion, writing blitzes, writing droughts, unexpected opportunities, or general life stresses, one season leads to the next. We can never be certain what lies ahead, but by God’s grace we thrive through it all.

3. No one trial defines us. No one triumph does, either. Life is a river of ever-moving current that sifts rich soil and smooths rough stones. No matter where we step into it, this process happens. Water that stands still grows stagnant. Water that moves carries life. Anyone who seeks to be exempt from life’s trials will also miss life’s triumphs. They come as a matched set, one in counterpoint to the other.

Whether on this day you are sneezing or grieving, squealing or screaming, wishing or whining, hiding or hoping, I want you to step into life and seek the fullness that awaits you.

And I will do the same.