Looking Elsewhere for Peace

I am aching for a good snow. Open the arctic windows, flood our land with a damp cold, and pour down the snow of my dreams.
My love affair with snow is silly and childlike. There. I admit it. I’m quite aware that snow complicates things. Travel is impaired with even the hint of wintry weather. Many individuals do not have the luxury to cozy up by their fire when sleet and snow coat their driveways. I am aware of all these things, but my heart still sings for the gauzy clouds of snow to descend from our highest mountains to our lowest valleys.
Here’s why I love snow: snow brings peace. Snow brings quiet. Snow brings transcendent rest and Sabbath.
Snow has the power of obscuring the raw, unattractive realities of our world. Our ability to see far ahead is limited and the falling flakes erase the horizons. Meteorologists will tell us that they measure the intensity of falling snow based upon the impaired visibility. In essence, the farther you can see—10 miles, for example—while it is precipitating would suggest a light snow with relatively minor accumulations. And yet, a snow that falls so heavily that you cannot see your neighbor’s house only 50 yards away heralds a heavy snow with the promise of a 10-foot tall snowman.
Snow also silences the noise of the world. The volume of traffic, construction or the sound of barking dogs is muted by the furiously falling snow. The sound of falling snow feels like being tucked into the softest of bed sheets.
And of course, snow transforms the landscape. It obscures the brown, beat-up lawns and grey leaves of the forest. Snow covers the scars we’ve inflicted upon the land, and magically converts the gnarled briars and undergrowth into a cathedral of decadent wonder and beauty.
Y’all, I need a good snow.
But I’m not going to get one. At least, not for some time. At present, our Christmas weekend looks to be mild. It will feel more reminiscent of mid-march than frosty December. To my great horror, the following week will tempt us to consider our spring gardening plans.
Although my heart yearns for the Sabbath and rest that only a good winter storm can provide, I’ll have no help from the weather department. I want my world to become smaller so that I can see the faces of my family more easily than I can the sadness and tragedies of our global community. The tidal waves of social media and ghastly headlines will give me no holiday and the world will not be transformed by the Magician’s Hand.
Any peace that I experience this Christmas season will not be because of snow. I suppose that peace will have to come from a higher source.
In lieu of drifting snow, the Prince of Peace will have to suffice.
First Baptist Church, may your celebration of Emmanuel—God With Us—bring you a peace that surpasses our failed attempts at peace-making. May you experience Sabbath these next few weeks so that your soul can find its rest in God. I pray that you will allow God to tend to your hearts so that you will see the world the way God sees it. Merry Christmas, brothers and sisters, and may the start of the New Year be restorative and rich.