Saturday, December 29, 2012
I sat in the darkness of early morning. The lights on the Christmas tree and other decorations illuminated our living room. Behind me (while I sit at our dining room table) is the front door that we rarely use. It has a single glass pane that runs the length and breadth of the door.
In the stillness of this morning, I turn in my chair and stare out the glass pane of the door into a Wisconsin winter wonderland. It snowed 5 inches yesterday and I had to shovel the walkways around the house and Church 3 times. As I look out this morning, through the illumination of the street lights, I see that it is snowing again…big flakes, straight down.
My initial thought was, “Ugh!” Shoveling snow is not my favorite form of exercise. But, have you ever watched it snow? There is something very peaceful about snow falling from the sky. It softly drifts down and lands in place. It gently comes to rest, so gently you can’t hear it. The soft flakes cover the earth with a mantle of white that gives an aura of purity to our dirty world. As much as I hate it, the snowfall is beautiful!
In the quietness of the moment, I sensed God still saying to us, “Peace, and on Earth goodwill toward men.” Yet, all around me there is turmoil. An elderly lady in our Church is in a nursing home and desperately wants to go home. A man from our community is suffering from aggressive cancer and is not expected to live long. A woman called to ask for help with gas to get her husband to the hospital for daily radiation treatments. A 3 year old child from our community is suffering from cancer with tumors so large that he is on a constant narcotic drip to help him with the pain. A Vietnam veteran’s knee is so swollen he can’t walk and doesn’t know if he can get medical help. Then yesterday, I gave a memorial for a 63 year old mother that, very unexpectedly, passed away in her son’s arms while they were waiting for an ambulance to arrive. These are just the immediate situations around me. There are other, greater issues. In Wisconsin, the congress is fighting internally causing the people to choose sides. Nationally, Democrats are fighting against the Republicans creating division in the country. The poor are demanding the government to take more money from the rich amplifying hatred among the classes. Then, to spoil the pot, it seems that little to no one is seeking God which causes a shadow of despair.
So, I sat for an half an hour or so in front of that big pane of glass in the door with a hot cup of coffee and watched it snow. It was great therapy. Then this thought struck me. “It really isn’t the snowfall. It’s getting quiet and being still.” Then, I remembered the scripture, “Be still and know that I am God…” (Psalm 46:10 NLT)In that quiet moment…in the stillness of early morning…in the midst of all the chaos…while the beautiful snow was falling, I knew, I just knew, God was still in control.