In the Dead of Winter


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One of my kids cried when I reported that another snow storm was coming. None of us ridiculed, belittled, or discouraged his tears. We all just shook our heads and silently hugged. We know, buddy…we know.

Seriously. This winter is relentless. Everyone is at their breaking point. With another round of closings, grocery panics, salt, boots, coats, shoveling, scraping, we must admit that if we didn’t have the self- control that my child lacks, we would all be crying too.
What do I have to offer my tearful crybaby who LOVES summer, swimming, and sunshine? Not much. Not the forecast. No signs of spring outside.
“Just focus on what’s true…spring always shows up. Always. God has never failed to move the sun and melt the snow. The grass will green and the pool will open,” I say.
“I know,” he says. “It’s just…”
I get it. We all get it.
His tears don’t come from a point of not knowing. They come from fatigue. He’s tired of waiting. We all are.
“But this is not life or death. This is a season, for crying out loud. Suck it up for another month and you’ll be trading your boots for flip-flops. We can do this thing!” …another heart-warming speech from Mom…
But what about when we don’t know? What about when fatigue is combined with uncertainty? What keeps us going when we are unemployed with no leads in sight? What do we do if our marriage seems without hope? What if the doctor gives a long, scary prognosis? What if grief just won’t let up. These winters don’t have calendars or predictable endings. These winters don’t have the comfort of camaraderie or the promise of a groundhog. In these winters, you don’t want to cry because you are afraid you won’t stop.
Lately, I’ve been looking out my life’s window at miles of winter. There are broken things that seem beyond repair. I’ve exhausted my list of resources and jumped through all of the hoops. People offer ideas, but I’ve tried them all. I’ve prayed on my knees, in the name of Jesus, and with others gathered in His name. Like my tearful child, I’m tired and at the end of my rope.
But God…
At the beginning of my “winter”, He gave me a verse. I’m sure I’ve read it lots of times, but it grabbed me one morning. My friction-burned hands let go of my rope and gripped the hope found in these words. 

“God… who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.” Romans 4:17b

In my winter, many things look dead. I can’t imagine how they will exist again. God reminds me that He is in the business of resurrection. That’s just how He do.

There is nothing I can do as the snow falls. But God can. My heart melts with those words. God can. He can do the impossible. He can repair the irreparable, He needs not jump through any hoops, His ideas are bigger than any I can imagine. 
I’m tired, so I still might cry, and I may let go of the rope sometimes, but God has me wrapped in a blanket of hope this season.

What looks dead out the window of your life? Have you given up? Are you fatigued with winter?
Turn to the only One who has the power to bring the spring.

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