Embracing a Wintry Christmas

Of the thirty-nine Christmases I’ve celebrated, all but two were at home in the north, where the bitter winds blow and the earth appears dead. The two spent in the southwest didn’t feel like Christmas at all. It was warm and dry. The palm trees swayed in the warm breezes. There was no snow.

I missed the snow most of all.

Over the past few years I’ve told myself time and again that Christmas isn’t about the snow. I could enjoy the snow, but should not associate it with Christmas. Only in the northern hemisphere is it winter during Christmas, and only in the far north is it cold enough for snow. There was no snow in Bethlehem those two thousand years ago. It may have been a cold night, but the palm trees were not so far off. I tell myself to look past the snow, past the wintertime season of our Christmases. Look only to the manger. Look only to Emmanuel.

But as I look out my window and see the browns and grays of leafless trees, the sky so dense with clouds that the suns rays cannot be seen, I notice that the snow is the most beautiful sight to behold. And I wonder if perhaps it is well to embrace a wintry, snowy Christmas after all.

The dead-looking trees remind me of the deadness of my spirit before God gave me His Spirit.

The bitter cold that chills me to the bone reminds me of the iciness of my heart that has been pierced and warmed by His love.

And the soft, clean, refreshing beauty of the snow reminds me that the babe in the manger would grow to die on a cross that He might cleanse me from my sin.

And make me whiter than snow.

Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow. – Psalm 51:7

Is there something that you can embrace with a fresh perspective this Christmas?

In hope,

About Shelli Bourque

An ordinary girl living by the grace of life in Christ. Adoring wife and mom. Lover of quiet places and uncluttered spaces. Beauty seeker and image maker.