I have to admit, winter is not my favorite season. I'm a spring and fall kind of person, but there are some things I just can't control, no matter how hard I try. The seasons and the weather which comes with them are things I simply cannot control. Last weekend, I was leading a retreat in Maryland, and we had to end sooner than expected because a winter storm was bearing down on the retreat center. With the prediction of several inches of snow, many retreatants decided to head home, leaving just a small group of die-hards wanting to stick it out. Being the leader, I decided to stay too, and I'm so glad I did.
As the snow began falling, a peace also fell over the center, and our little group talked, prayed and ate wonderful food, prepared by a dedicated staff. Some of us ventured out, enjoying the snow as it came down. Together and individually, we experienced God's loving presence and when we were finally able to leave, we felt so blessed and renewed.
For those of you living on the East Coast, you may know that our winter forecast includes the return of the Polar Vortex, something I for one am not looking forward to. The last one helped create one of the most snow-filled winters I had ever experienced since moving to Maryland nearly thirty years ago. We'll see what happens, but I must admit that I can't wait for spring!
I recently came across a blog post written by Vinita Hampton Wright, and she writes about three ways to Find God in Winter. In her simple style, she lays them out: Use the opportunity for deeper prayer; Explore other sources of joy; Identify winter-worthy opportunities to serve. As we move into the deepest part of winter, please take a few minutes and read Vinita's post and then pray about how, in addition to her three ideas, you might think up a few of your own as we all go about Finding God throughout this winter season.