January 15, 2023 Weekly Newsletter

John the Baptist had it right in the scripture reading from John 1:23-27. Even in the beauty of the creation around us. We have been very fortunate, or as some may feel unfortunate that our world has been blanketed by the clean white snow.  Maybe too much for some but for others a blessing.  So much a blessing that we are not worthy of receiving this life giving gift.

With the bountiful harvest of snow on the ground this winter we forget what a life giving gift this may be for the world. This snow gives cover and insulation to the animals which rely on hibernation during these winter months and plants in dormancy as they await the spring warmth. How quickly we forget the drought that many of us in our area preserved through as this blanket of white minimizes the frost in the ground allowing for the percolation of the moisture as the spring thaws arrive. The lakes and rivers will accept this snow in the spring and just maybe Lake Mora will look more like a lake than a puddle.  And, whether we live in town or out in the country this gift insulates our water lines and septic systems. Not the first thing I would think of but I have needed to do septic work in the winter when there is no snow-not fun!

Ok, maybe your back aches from shoveling. Your car gets stuck right in your driveway. Your gloves are always getting wet, boots filled with snow, and lakes covered with snow and a layer of water making it difficult to get out and fish. Yes, sometimes it is hard to see the glory in God’s gifts, but fear not God brings joy with this gift: snow angels, cross country and downhill skiing, snowmen, snowball fights, icicles, and no lawn mowing!

Last week Friday we were blessed with God’s gift of hoar frost (as seen in the image above).  The beauty of the frost in the trees gives a new luster to God’s creation.As the frost begins to fall as the sun warms the trees it reminds me of “fairy-dust” as it flutters to the earth from above.  Yes, even in the cold of winter I can sum this up with the hymn “ All Creatures of Our God and King” (UMH 62) as it gives praise to all of the great and small gifts of our Lord that we often take for granted. “Lift up your voice and with us sing” of wind, air clouds and rain; brother sun and sister moon; flowers and fruits; “praise God and on him cast your care!”  Yes, we are like John the Baptist as we too are not worthy of God’s gifts, but receive them with gratitude and thanksgiving. We are all blessed! Amen.

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