Monday, January 04, 2010
30 Days of Touch -- Cold!
Chestnuts roasting on a open fire
Jack Frost nibbling on your nose....
"Jack Frost nibbling on your nose..." That's how Asthon LaPorte, youngest grandson (fifth grade) sings that line of Mel Torme's classic "Christmas Song." And regardless of whether Mel was right ("Jack Frost nippin' at your nose") or Ashton, today I was on Ashton's side -- it felt like Jack Frost was nibblin' on my nose.
It was cold today in Indiana. Fifteen degrees colder than it normally is in Indiana. I mean, nowhere are as cold as International Falls, MN (-9 at the minute), but still cold enough for me -- and my cute little nose. It was cold enough that I wore a sweater ... a top coat ... a fedora...gloves...and a scarf. And turned on the heated seats in the hybrid (nicknamed Andy).
But the time I got to work today I had shed the gloves, the fedora, the coat and scarf. The heated seats remained on.
The touch of the cold reminded me of the warmth of God's love. That's because that cold ... any bitter cold ... feels so much like absence of warmth that it literally takes my breath away. I find it hard to breathe -- to suck the warming elixir of life into my lungs and let it speed oxygen through my body. And if there is anything about God that I know (and as I age, it seems like the depth of the bowl of knowledge of God and God's ways is much deeper than my wisdom can fill) it is that God's love is warm and life-giving. It is not bitter cold and breath-stealing.
And so I gave thanks today -- in spite of the cold -- for a warm coat, nice scarf, dapper looking hat, lined gloves, and a toasty car. And I remembered, as I passed them, my brothers and sisters who are less fortunate than I -- who live with the bitter cold in their bones. And not just on cold days like today. And I wondered ... as I wandered ... what am I called to do for them? Surely it is not just enough for me to rejoice in my warmth. Or to think good, warm thoughts toward them. What would Jesus have me do?
And dare I leave my warm surroundings to do it?