We were up and out of the house at 7:30am, braving the gusts, snow drifts, and winding roads. Hey, this is Canada after all - what's a snow storm without breakfast at Tim Horton's? My husband and I sip hot coffee and the kids munch muffins while the farmers next to us talk weather and harvests and how much snow we're 'gonnah git'.
I smile and try to inhale long and deep. I can feel the tension rising in my neck as the snow falls around us. Winter. I love Christmas but I really don't love Winter. Or snow. Or the cold. Or ice. Or slush. Or being stuck inside. Or the months of January through April. You know, generally speaking.
I feel guilty when I think about my negative attitude, even if it's deep within. Where's my gratitude now? You know, that sincere soul-thanks for the sunshine and the tulips and the veggies growing high in the summer sun?
God gives Summer but does He not also give Winter?
Who am I to say only one is good and not the other?
We're reading through Matthew this month. It hasn't been perfect, but we're pushing along, trying hard to keep drinking in the wisdom of the gospel. The peace of the Story. The greatest Story. The Story we're supposed to be focused on this season and always.
In the midst of the white squalls and narrowing walls and the storm closing in around me, I read Jesus' words:
"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." (Matthew 11:28-30, The Message)
Thank you, Jesus - for this truth. The people were burnt out then, when He spoke the words and this Mama is burnt out now, reading this words. The word of God is living, sharp as a knife. That, it is.
And there's a clearing in the midst of the blizzard.
The world buzzes and whirls but Christ says:
Stick with me, child, and you'll learn to live freely and lightly.
Who, when stuck in the middle of a storm (whether it's a snow storm or a soul storm), doesn't need to live a little more freely and lightly?
Get away with me and you'll recover your life.
Especially this time of year, yes. When everything is supposed to be about Christ and yet everything tips upside down and suddenly nothing is about Christ. I'm so busy running, making, baking, crafting - I don't have time for praying, seeking, reaching, loving. In the midst of my remembering, I completely forget.
There is an entire recovery that needs to take place. In me and in all of us. The rediscovering of who we are and why we're here. In Christ we rediscover and recover.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
Yes, because Christ's yoke is easy and His burden is so light. And in Him alone there is this beautiful dance that takes place between child and Father. He is gentle and He is love and He dances over us like those white flakes fluttering gracefully down. Unforced. Steady. Free-falling in perfect time.
Praying peace over you tonight and always.