Most of us start longing for spring shortly after Christmas. And for many good reasons: the anticipation of returning song birds, signs of new life bringing their annual previews of resurrection, flowers pushing up green hands through the still cold soil announcing brighter days ahead and weather forecasts of fair and warmer replacing wind- chill factors. Even those who live in year-long warmer climbs can't resist looking forward to the season of new beginnings.
Standing in line at the Post Office, I heard a man grumbling about the cold weather. My efforts to brighten his mood were to no avail until I reminded him of the calendar's steady march to the first day of spring. "I never thought of it that way," he said breaking into a smile.
Looking forward to spring makes winter seem shorter. No matter how cold it may be at the moment, those who focus on the promise of spring know that just beyond the snow balmy breezes blow.
Enjoy the anticipation.
But don't waste the wonder of winter.
In these parts, this has been a week of mind sticking winter scenes. Freshly fallen snow made one feel the whole world was clean. Pines were heavily powdered and heaps of white on our birdfeeders gave them the appearance of Swiss chalets. Now I understand why God comforted Job in his many afflictions by reminding him that He was the creator of snow (Job 38:22).
Taking in the view from my window one morning, I gave thanks for our Lord's handiwork and found myself wanting to capture this strikingly beautiful winter scene and remember it as long as possible. Winter's wonder made me realize the importance of squeezing the most out of every moment of life
This moment is an important occasion. Don't waste it complaining about the weather. Rise each morning thanking God for clouds or sunshine, heat or cold and you are sure to have a better day.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, "Write it on your heart that every day is the best day of the year. He only is rich who owns the day, and no one owns the day who allows it to be invaded with worry, fret and anxiety."
Each moment has eternal value and we are all stewards of seconds.
The Psalmist was so conscious of time's fast flight that he recorded the following prayer: "So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts to wisdom," (Psalm 90:12), adding, "O satisfy us early with Your mercy, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days" (Psalm 90:14).
Most of us have been prodigals with time and foolishly spent a possession that is far more valuable than money. Give thanks for the prospect of sunny days ahead, but don't spring forward too quickly. Enjoy the wonder of winter because it is where we are today. And, whatever the season, faith sees today as the best day of the year.
Roger Campbell is an author, a broadcaster and columnist who was a pastor for 22 years. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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