"Choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.” Joshua 24:15

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A Blanket of White

It's a new day and another white one. Yes, the blizzard of 2011 has officially struck my neck of the woods--Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan have definitely been blanketed by a sheet of pure white.  It's beautiful and yet, oh so, tiresome.  Goodness, I got out of my car, slipped and totally landed on my you know what. Ouch! Then, while returning to my car, I did the exact same thing.  And, yes, that was even after my son had salted the ice patch. Grrr. 

When I think of some of my best childhood memories, however, I go back to the times when it snowed in Detroit--when school was canceled and we went sledding. We would go to the hill by my aunt's home and trudge through the snow--heavy coat, leggings, boots, hat, gloves, scarf, dogs, and siblings, and throw caution to the wind. We totally rocked 'the hill.'   My siblings and I would spend the
entire day (or at least it seemed like it) sledding down, and then trudging back up, just to sled down the hill again. Our dog would follow us, running and barking.  Yes, I remember those great times, and they all centered around snow.

When I think of great times now, that white stuff doesn't remotely enter my mind. No, I think of sandy, white beaches, hammocks, iced tea, and the like.  It's like Maui, Hawaii vs. Juneau, Alaska. Ha.  I think I am more of a Hawaiian than an Alaskan.  Definitely more of Californian than an Ohioan.  I can't help it; I was born and raised in Southeastern Michigan.  And I am here to stay.  I crave sunshine and warm weather vs. snow and ice, chillaxing in a hammock with a diet coke (and reading a great book) vs, snow shoveling, picnics at the beach vs. take out pizza, a long bike ride vs. a long sleigh ride--virtually everything that is the antithesis of the cold and snow.

A far cry from my childhood memories, when I now think of snow, I think of having to plow (shovel) my driveway in order to get my car out so I can drive to work; I think of bulky coats and hats, icy roads and car accidents, freezing hardwood floors and warm blankets.  Nope, snow nowadays definitely conjures up a totally different ambiance and attitude than my childhood memories every did.  I still totally love the look of snow--that beautiful, clear, clean white stuff, falling from the sky and blanketing my world in white, but I don't love it's potential for exhaustion and gangrene.
It's awesome to think about snow and some of things it represents. Each snowflake totally different from the next or the last, only gaining strength when it lands amidst millions of others, creating such a stunning landscape.  Yet, when a single snowflake falls, alone and independent, without the others, it merely melts. It cannot stand alone. That's just not how snow works.  It almost has to be a blizzard in order to really make a difference in the world's landscape. No, snow gains its strength only in numbers and extreme temperatures.  It just can't stand alone. 

And neither can I.

I am so grateful that God created each and every one of us to be 'in communion' with one another, to be 'in relationship' with one another, to be 'accountable' to one another. Yes, we are relational beings and are called to be in relationship with many, mainly with Jesus. We are not meant to stand alone.

And although we are each different, with our own DNA, as is each and every snowflake, we are meant to be, work and commune together. Each one of us is different, indescribable, and unique, just as snowflakes and relationships are.  But....whether an Alaskan, Hawaiian, Ohioan, Floridian, Indian, Brit, Scot, African, or any other, we have all been called to be in relationship with Jesus.  The One and Only.

Today, as my world has become blanketed in snow, the University where I work is closed, and my children are home from school, I hope to spend some of my time reflecting upon my relationships--with the Lord, my girlfriends and my guy friends, my neighbors and my colleagues--and thanking the Lord for each and every one of them.  I will also be thanking the Lord for this snow.  Inasmuch as I don't like the enormity of it all, it has provided me a day off of work, and for that, I am truly thankful.

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