The Cure Before the Need

“God is good,” I said in class Tuesday night. “Goodness and mercy will follow me all the days of my life.” I said. Why? “Because I am with Jesus and Jesus is the Good Shepherd,” I said.  I went on to explain that God is trying to build our confidence that His Goodness impacts every area of our life all the time. And then it snowed.

Enough snow to postpone an event that I have been planning for months.  Ugh. My heart is busting with revelation. My team and I are all prayed up and armored up. We are chomping at the bit — and, the event is postponed. Really?

I wanted to whine. Or be sad or complain. But the Spirit kept repeating a line from a song we did in worship Tuesday night. “You are good, good. Yes you are good. You never fall off of your throne. You are good.”

God is so good that He is sometimes preemptive. I see that He gave me the cure before the need. The answer before the question. Instead of a “whhhhhyyyyyyy??” I am looking for His goodness.  He has raised a better question, “Lord what do you want me to do in the meantime?

Here is a short run list:
• Enjoy my kids in the snow.  My final prep crunch time has turned into a crafting, cooking, laughing with my family time.
• Take a deep breath and let go. Again. He whispered ever so sweetly to me, “there is no pressure here.”  Oh that’s right. He leads me in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.  This conference was about Him.  He can move it if He wants. I can trust Him in the details of getting the word out and rescheduling. (By the way, New Date is March 4-5!)
•Take a step back and review.  I can say a little extra time to pray, sort and refine really is a gift. He knew I needed that, I didn’t.

In the long run?  More time to worship, to listen, to get the word out, to move out of snow windows. Who knows what else He has up His sleeve?

But He is good. All the time.  So this weekend, I am going to snuggle up with the Good Shepherd and enjoy His snow. Hope you do the same.


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The Blinding Snow

When we were talking about how snow reminds us of the Character of God, The Why’s of Snow, it bothered me that snow is freezing and icy. I don’t think of God as cold and freezing at all. So I asked the Spirit to make some sense of this for me. The word came: “Snow is blinding.”

Blinding? Then I got a picture of walking down the beach and how the sun on white sand is also blinding. I heard this faint whisper that Glory is blinding. God’s glory is so amazing, so breathtaking it is hard for us to take it all in. Our earthly eyes can hardly adjust to the eternal brightness. Read this passage from Revelation talking about Jesus. The All Glorious One. No longer the babe in swaddling clothes but the Warrior King coming for His Bride.  And perhaps the next time you shield your eyes, from snow or sand or sun, think Glory. Glory coming for you. Amen and Amen.

“I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me.

And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone “like a son of man,” dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest.

The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire.

His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters.

In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword.

His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.

– Revelation 1:12-16

The Why’s of Snow

We didn’t go to church yesterday because of the snow. We did however have an amazing conversation with the girls about God and snow. I read Psalm 51 aloud and we talked about how He washes us whiter than snow. You probably already know this verse, but when you see your front yard being transformed before your very eyes, it is good to dwell on the reality. This is how God sees us — being transformed into a wonderland.

Here are a few other nuggets for your spirit.
Snow is a visible representation of God’s character.
1) It is unpredictable. Despite the best efforts of weathermen and preachers, snow and God can not be pinpointed. He comes and goes at his own bidding. So does the snow. We can only prepare, watch and wait.

2) The snow is unstoppable. No one can make it stop.  Once it begins, we must adjust our lives around snow, not the other other way around. It is the same with God. Nothing thwarts his plans. so our plans come to a screeching halt when they collide with his or we learn to adapt to His timing.  He will have his way. The lesson here is how we react to snow and God changing our courses.  We can grumble or we can enjoy the detour.

3) Snow is fun. Now why did God do that, make snow so fun, unless He is also very fun loving? The things in nature that cause us to squeal with delight are invitations to see the God of delight. He made those on purpose for us to enjoy, and for us to see glimpses of what he is like. Think about it. Sliding down the icy hills screaming? That was His idea.

I stood inside and watched my kids play outside. Their laughter, their red cheeks and frosty breaths made me wonder what is was like to be God watching His kids play?  Do you think he smiles and flinches like I did? Snow is yet another amazing gift from our Giving God. And despite the inconvenience and interruption, despite the threat and risk, make sure you take time to just say thank you. He really is a fun loving character.

9 However, as it is written:
“What no eye has seen,
what no ear has heard,
and what no human mind has conceived”—
the things God has prepared for those who love him—

10But  these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit.

1 Corinthians 2:9-10

Weight of the Snow

With all the snow, no snow, everyone-else-but-us-gets-snow drama, I am frankly a little over the conversation. But in our brief visit with snow here in East Tennessee, the Lord reminded me of one important lesson and taught me a couple of others.

Looking out my bedroom window, the whole hillside was one thick blanket of white. Now compared to Northern snow accumulation, our blanket was more like an afghan, or a little fleece throw.  But everything had been truly transformed into a glittering white wonderland. The Lord, quietly as the snow falls, brought back memories of the first snow after my salvation experience.  It was the Blizzard of ’93.

Talk about snow. That day as I enjoyed the deep breath that always comes after a heavy snow, and marveled at the sheer beauty of the white expanse,  the Lord brought to mind words from an old hymn: “Sin had left a crimson stain, He washed it white as snow.” My heart stopped for a moment. As a new believer, I needed that tangible, living picture of what God had done and was doing.  He took my torn and ravaged heart and life, and washed it, covered it, transformed it into a glittering white wonderland. So now when I see a landscape transformed, with no control or ability to self-snow, I thank the Lord once again for His unfailing grace and love.

This year’s revelation is equally thoughtful. When we turned on the radio to assess one of the “impending” snow storms, (there were three whole flakes on the ground) they kept talking about the “weight of the snow” and its ability to break power lines.

I don’t know why but that phrase keeps rolling around in my head. The weight of the snow.  Think tiny flakes that add one on another. Each one unique and different. One author likened the snow as evidence of God’s ability to be Creator of us all.  We balk at the notion of 7 billion people being valued originals. But one has only to measure a couple of city blocks of snow, covered in billions of original snow flakes to see this kind of creative endeavor is no hill for a Climber.

However, I am going in a different direction.  Just as there is a weight of snow, there is a weight of God’s grace.  And we sometimes view grace like we do snow. We question whether we will even get grace. Whether it is enough to even be concerned about. We complain that some get more than others. Then we flip radical switches and fear God will break our power lines and render us helpless and stranded. Of course, all the while, we talk, predict, disparage and mumur about the “snow” instead of talking to the “Snow Maker.”

There is a weight of God’s grace. Like a robe that has been thrown over our shoulders. We can feel it. Tangibly know it is there. There is also an accumulation of His grace. It seems hardly worth the notice but when it starts pouring, it changes everything. It causes us to stop and breathe, to redirect our routes, to get out and play. It even teaches us how to prepare for when things go completely awry and we are without independent power. We hole up and wait.

One thing about this picture that is kind of scary and kind of fun: we never know when we will get either, snow or grace. Only that we will. Just as as He boasts of his “storehouses of snow,” our God has limitless grace. You can eat it, wear it, play in it, build in it and you can even crash in it.
He is the everlasting Grace Giver.

Enjoy your “snow” days.