Winter blues have already hit me in a big way. I actually love winter, the snow, Christmas, and all that comes with it, except for the early evening darkness. It can easily overcome the light in my spirit, and I’m not an overly bubbly personality anyway, so it can take some effort to get on top of the pull to simply hibernate all winter.
There’s a similar pull in my spirit when I face tough times. When we have car troubles and finances are low, when there are personal disappointments, failures, or feeling rejected, when I sense a lack in some areas of my life, and/or when I experience losses or attacks to my relationships, hopes or dreams, finding the lightness, the joy, can be a challenge. Yet, I’ve decided to never give up trying and to never give in to despising the dark times…
Just as flowers and plants need the dark and dormant times in order to grow more and to flourish, I’ve learned that I do also. It can be cold and lonely at times, like walking across this college campus where I work on a dark, snowy, windy night. Warmth and rest, light and laughter can seem very far away in those moments, and longing for the safety and shelter of the more light times in life can become consuming at times. However, if I pause, I can see the sparkle still there, in the reflection of the moon on the snow or the life in the birds flitting from one barren tree to the other on a grey day, and in my heart, I can sense a transformation happening that wouldn’t take place in the lighter times.
These dark times push me closer to God. I’ve learned that my dependency on Him and trust in Him grow in the barren times. The tears I cry, the ache in my heart, and the anxiety in my spirit are seen and felt and heard by Him, and He draws me close, if I let Him. His Presence becomes more tangible, real, and calming to mine, assuring me that He is with me through every step in the darkness and that He will always be a light for me in those dark places when all other lights have gone out (Lord of the Rings).Finally, His Spirit reminds me of the hope that lies ahead, no matter how dark the days or how long the nights may seem.
ROSES UNDERNEATH THE SNOW Summer groves may lose their gladness, wint'ry winds may wander by, Cures may come and weary sadness, must we then forever sigh? Brave the storm with firm endeavor, let your vain repinings go; Hopeful hearts will find forever roses underneath the snow. CHOR. Brave the storm with firm endeavor, let your vain repinings go; Hopeful hearts will find forever roses underneath the snow. One by one the links that bind us may be severed here on earth. But the sun will surely find us thro' the Winter's gloomy dearth; Cheerful hearts around us beating, wearing ever Summer's glow; Ah! we know you're always meeting roses underneath the snow.-Chorus. Never joy that earth can send us can forever leave us here; Ev'ry flower that Spring can lend us blooms again another year; Care's may come, but never mind them, joy may come and joys may go- Look around and you will find them- roses underneath the snow.-Chorus. (American Old Time Song Lyrics: 28, http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/songster/28-roses-underneath-the-snow.htm)