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Sunday, February 3, 2008

A Plethora of Snow

In the last two weeks I've spent about 25 hours shoveling snow. I've watched my backyard fill like a bowl to overflowing as the snow is now higher than the fence and has erased all the boundaries separating me from my neighbors. Small, light flakes of white keeping drifting down, constant, unending. Who would think they could pile up and cause such a weight as to collapse my carport cover and destroy my truck? White, innocent, pure snow--with a powerful whack behind it! Alas, I must now go shopping for another truck.

So, as I sit in my office writing my new fantasy book, The Land of Darkness, (maybe I should call it The Land of Whiteness), the snow keeps piling higher and higher. Life, as we in Chester know it, has come to an almost screeching halt. It takes all the effort one can muster just to get out and snowblow the driveway and unbury the car to slip and slide to the market to get food. I feel like I'm in Narnia, where it's "always winter and never Christmas."

I think of how fragile our planet it; how a few degrees climate change can hurtle us into another ice age or raise the oceans 20'. I believe the earth is on a course of destruction, due to human selfishness. But I am glad to know that in the Bible book of Revelation, the returning King says he will "destroy those who are destroying the earth (Rev 11:18). I point this out to people, but most glaze over: Only in this recent time have humans had the ability to literally destroy the eart. A century ago, man's wars could wreak havoc on local areas, but now we can blow up the entire planet many times over with our wonderful inventions! God forsaw a time when humans would have this capability, and says at the time he destroys those destroying the earth he will also "reward those who fear your name, the great and small." Makes me think of Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, who referred to herself humbly before the Wizard as "Dorothy, the small and meek." [I digress] Surely we are all a bit responsible for destroying the earth by the cars we drive and the pollution we emit from the energy sources we use.

But clearly God does not intend to destroy everyone. I believe there is implied an intent: a careless, selfish unconcern for the stewardship God has given humans. Jesus gave us the low-down in the parable of the wicked tenants. We have been given his precious property to caretake, but we have treated it badly. It is a joy to know, then, that "the meek will inherit the earth" and that they will dwell there in peace, with no one to make them tremble. Perhaps part of our task will be to clean up the planet, beautify the places that are now squalor and filth. I'd be glad to volunteer! Maybe my landscaping skills will come in handy...

It will be many months before I see green again in the land around me. I am sick of all this white, to be sure. But the snow is a reminder to me of the purity of God, and his power. How easily I can be buried by just this one element. I am, as always, at his mercy. Something I am very grateful for, as "it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God" (Heb 10:31).

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