As I open my blinds, I’m not surprised by the blanket of snow covering the ground nor by the gray sky and air filled with snowflakes adding to the think layer of white. Not a blade of grass to be seen nor even twig. Every movement feels slower as though the world is asleep and hibernating like a bear on the inside, but awake on the outside.
I remember the first sighting of snow this year. I joined my children in their excitement, pausing on school and other tasks to enjoy it’s beauty. There’s nothing quite like a first snow. Except maybe a first kiss, or seeing a bear in the wild for the first time, or stepping into a new home, or the moment a dream becomes a reality, or just getting married, or learning how to drive, or giving birth to a new baby…
And then firsts become seconds and seconds become thirds and before you know it snow becomes – just snow. No longer is it seen as something glorious and miraculous, but in fact it becomes a burden or an obstacle in the way of productivity. What was new an exciting now feels old and mundane. How easy it is to let go of the wonder of children or the gratitude for a spouse and even the awe we once had of God. I’m reminded of a Bible verse that seems to suggest there is a solution.
Revelation 2:4-5a says, “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. 5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first…”
If God commands us to return to our first love, then He also has also made a way for this to be possible. What is it? Repent and do the things you did at first.
What happened when we saw our first snow? We stopped to admire it.
What happened when I held one of my children for the first time? I stopped to snuggle and soak it all in.
What happened when I first got married? We took a week to stop and enjoy quality time together.
What happened when I first saw a grizzly bear? We stopped to marvel and respect it’s enormity and tender way with her cub.
What happened when a new dream became a reality? I stopped to share my excitement with the world.
In every first, the thing I did wasn’t doing more. Instead, it was stopping from all I was doing.
Maybe the answer to finding the love and excitement we once had isn’t found in searching for a new thing. It isn’t finding a new toy or a new circumstance or a new…. you name it. Maybe the answer to finding the joy and excitement we once had is to stop.
Maybe life is much less about doing things and plunging forward in productivity. Maybe life is found when we allow ourselves pause and be mesmerized by the beauty around us and to behold the glory of the Lord. Perhaps then snow will no longer feel like an obstacle but an opportunity to stop and regain the love, joy, and excitement we felt at first.