I’ve been watching news of the winter in North America with some nostalgia. Growing up in Canada, long, cold winters with lots of snow were normal. We loved it when school was canceled due to snow storms. You could usually count on a snow day 3 or 4 times a year. Snow would cover the ground from about late November to late March, give or take a couple weeks.
For the last decade, I have lived in more temperate climates and haven’t had to endure the cold blasts of winter or deal with shoveling snow. I have grown soft and find that -1̊ Celsius is now plenty cold for me. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a snow day where I’ve had the chance to stay home and just watch out the window.
Winter is seldom anyone’s favorite season, but it has a job to do. During the deep freeze of winter, tree roots go deeper while plants die off and nourish the soil. Some seeds need the cold in order to die and thus release new life in the spring. In short, scientists have learned that the dead of winter is necessary for the birth of spring. While it might look like nothing is happening under those layers of snow, winter is actually at work. In some locations, if the winter is too mild, it could mean a poor season for harvesting several months later
“There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under the heavens.” (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
In our seasons of life, we seldom embrace winter – it looks too much like death. Yet winter is a needed and necessary season in order to live a well-rounded life. One chapter must close in order for another to begin. Our personal seasons don’t always follow the calendar, but we should not fear or seek to avoid those winter moments. Winter allows for rest and renewal. When winter does its job properly, it will be followed by new life in the spring. So when the dark days start and snow piles up, grab a warm blanket and stay inside for a snow day. Let winter do its work.