Today, as many people in the north know, was the first snow. The first day in a long, cold winter.
Usually, I dislike the winter. It’s cold, people are always inside, we get sick easy, and there is no sun.
But this year seems different. It’s interesting to me because for maybe the first time, I’m finding myself enjoying the sight of snow. When I was younger, I always had a sort of bittersweet thought process about it that went something like,
“Ugh, it’s snowing but maybe school will get cancelled.”
The strange thing is, at the moment, I find myself relishing the snowfall. The white of the snow, the purity of it, the beauty. Some people would say I’m just finally “getting into the Christmas spirit” while others would say my tastes are changing.
I’m inclined to think that actually, maybe for the first time, I’m beginning to see the winter through God’s eyes.
This morning I was woken up by a barrage of childlike, excited Facebook messages (you know who you are -__-) that announced the arrival of the snow. I expected to find myself moaning and groaning about how terrible snow is, but for some reason I was just as excited. Even now I have an excitement in my heart that I’ve rarely felt.
Now, as I look outside my bedroom window and see the snow, the pure blanket of white that visits every year, I’m reminded of what I can be.
Not only does the snow awaken in me an energy-filled child, anxious to go outside and enjoy the powdery blessing, but it also stirs up a solemn, wizened old man who realizes that this is a visualization of God’s promise of redemption.
Yesterday, a fellow missionary and I spent the afternoon collecting and disposing of the dead and decaying yard waste around our house and not even a day later, all that death is replaced with pure, undefiled, white beauty.
If you can’t see God’s message in that maybe you can see it in Isaiah 1:18 (NKJV):
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow”
This promise of redemption reveals to us that although we may only see our failures, our sin, our death now, our sins shall be cleansed from us and made pure.
We mess up. “To err is human” and all that. We make mistakes. We sin. We deserve to die. We deserve abandonment. We deserve to die.
But God doesn’t give us what we deserve. Instead, He gives us what Jesus deserved. And Jesus, in turn, got what we deserved. Jesus took our death, cleared our names, all so that we don’t have to pay the price of ultimate separation from God.
He saved us. He cleansed us. He makes us white as snow.
So this year when I saw the first snow, I didn’t just see the falling clumps of frozen water.
I saw my salvation and the fulfillment of God’s promise to me.
I saw the First Light of God’s patience and love.