Thursday, November 12, 2015

Winter Storm 2015

Posted by Lauren Sparks on February 27, 2015 at 5:15 PMDelete 
It's Friday afternoon and snow has been steadily falling all day.  God has squeezed most of our winter weather into this one week.  The kids have been out of school 2 full days and 2 half days out of five.  As is often the case in Texas, the temp is predicted to be 73 degrees by Tuesday, but for now, at least, it looks like a winter wonderland outside of my window.

As a born and raised Texas gal, snow is more uncommon than common.  So it is always an event.  We don't have equipment for it and we don't know how to drive on it.  It sends the news media into a frenzy and lots of tires into skids.  So we tend to keep the kids home from school and close as many businesses as possible to keep vehicles at home.  And the kids in my neighborhood grab cookie sheets, laundry baskets, pieces of cardboard, and anything else that will double as a sled and head to the big hill our elementary school sits on.

I prefer to look at it from the warmth of my house, as I sip my hot tea and wiggle my toes inside my fuzzy socks.  The snow is beautiful.  It blankets the rooftops and yards and cars in pure, fluffy white.  I can't help but think of Isaiah 1:18, "Come now, let us settle the matter," says the Lord.  "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."  God is in the business of forgiveness.  It doens't matter to God what we have done.  1 John 1:8-9 says, "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.  If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness."  No matter how greatly we feel we have messed up, all we have to do is admit to God that we have, and acknowledge our need of Jesus as savior, and then He makes us brand new - just like the fresh snow.

In Texas, the snow doesn't last but a day or two - if that.  After the roads have been driven over a few dozen times and the temperature starts to rise, the snow drifts turn into piles of grey, muddy slush.  There isn't much that looks dirtier or grosser to me.  Such a stark contrast to the bright white it was before.  It saddens me a little - making me wish it didn't have to change.  And so I see myself.  My sins.  The gift of God's salvation doesn't immunize me from future sin.  God still gives us free will, and I am OH SO human.  My opportunity and capacity to blow it remains relatively unchanged.  But my desire to remain clean increases.  Sometimes that helps me stay out of trouble.  Other times it just makes me sad and repentant when I do stray from God's best for me.  I lie, I watch or read something I shouldn't, I treat someone with malice, I judge someone unfairly, and then I start to see myself more like the grey slush than the clean white snow.  But the most amazing news is that once we begin a relationship with God, He NEVER sees us as dirty slush again!  "God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness (read "right", "clean", "sinless") of God."   2 Corinthians 5:21.  It doesn't say we become the righteousness until we screw up again.  It doesn't say we become the righteousness when we are acting our most christian-like.  It says WE BECOME.  We are right with God forevermore!  He will never see us as anything but perfect and worthy  - and yes, white as snow.  Because Jesus makes us that.  Praise God for this amazing gift!

"Jesus paid it all.
All to Him I owe.
Sin had left a crimson stain.
He washed it white as snow." - lyrics by Elvina M. Hall, 1865

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