The last of the snow flurries blew across my windowpane a few days ago, as though waving farewell. This time, they were just flurries. Winter was still holding on, but its grasp was breaking.
Even as I watch now, the last of the snows melt freely outside. The thundering, windy blizzards have past. He has spoken the word and the north winds drew back their cold. He gave the command, as He promised He would, as He is always faithful to do.
That snow that made me cry just a few days ago was most probably the last snow of the season. Tears came with the gentleness He displayed in its falling, as though He was tenderly speaking one last word of His beautiful and gentle love, covering everything in pure white – a portrait and glimpse of what is to come in garments adorning (Rev. 19:7-8). It was His love in the softness of the falling beauty that brought me to tears. Jesus, You’re making me cry, came the whispered prayer.
The blizzards came in their might and awe was born in the hearts that watched Him stop the work of man that His own works might be displayed (Job 37: 6-13). And my own heart stood still in wonder, hushed by the splendor, amazed by the extent that He would go to make Winter hold on, just a little longer. Yet it was the very last snow – quiet and slow, yet steady and beautiful – that brought the tears and pierced the heart. It was those last flurries that finally surfaced prayers and gave language to my own hold on winter’s cold.
The Gold of Winter
For though the snows were in creation, my heart knows what they point to – that gold of winter found in the seasons of the heart. There are treasures found here, not in the losses that transpire in the freezing, but in the fellowship that is forged in the solitude and in the stillness. It’s Jesus that we find more deeply in winter’s covering – if we look for Him.[blockquote align=”right”]It’s Jesus that we find more deeply in winter’s covering – if we look for Him.[/blockquote]
Undeniably, winter is not always sweet. Snows are pretty to behold from within sheltered and warm windows. But the freeze beneath the ground can be painful and cold, leaving the heart alone and forlorn. Questions looming with silence hovering.
Even so, there is something to be said for the times when the north winds persist in their unrelenting grasp. There’s something to be said for the sweetness of nearness with Jesus that one only finds when the freeze of cold has eliminated all other options, all other audiences, and all escape routes.
When we’re alone with the Lord with no other options, when all the accolades of men have gone silent, there is such sweetness in the simplicity, if we’ll receive it. There is deepening love in the singularity of fellowship with Jesus. Here we find that solitude and silence and sweetest communion only offered from these cold caverns – realities not offered elsewhere.
Arising with Treasures
With the warm winds and the sounds of spring comes the movement and the songs. And though there is sweetness found in the breaking of green from the ground, one cannot help but hold close the sweetness found in the cold, never to be forgotten.
When in the winter seasons, we mustn’t rush out and miss the gold to be found. And when He changes the season once more – snows melting and green surfacing – we must hold to our hearts the treasure that we found in the cold.
Just as not one snowflake falls impersonally or separate from His command, these winds have permission to be here. And no matter the circumstance that surrounds, greater love is always part of the invitation – always, without exception.
If we walk through these snow-covered passages with a yes in our hearts and the covenant of trust binding, the green of spring will find us arising with hearts full of treasures imperishable and fellowship with Jesus eternal (James 1:1-12; 1 Pet. 1:4).