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Lessons learned on snowy days

The snow and ice from the previous weeks have made many churches “self-quarantine” due to the weather.

The church I serve has a radio ministry on 92.9 FM, and as long as there is a preacher, we will have worship. The previous three snow/ice weekends we strongly encouraged worshippers to listen in or worship on the internet for safety reasons. The parsonage is close enough for me to walk to the church, so our doors are always open for worship even during inclement weather.

On January 27, I was the only one in church leading worship. It was definitely a memorable time for me, likely to never happen again. The following two Sundays we had a total of four people, including our pianist, youth and children’s minister, choir director and myself.

The Bible tells us that our God works all things — including snowstorms — for our good (Romans 8:28). So, what good, God-glorifying purposes might God have for sending snow?

I cannot control the weather. Even if it’s on a Sunday. Here’s an idea that seems impossible, to give up trying to control things and trust God. The trick to being OK was not in controlling what was going to happen, but in taking care of myself so I could be OK regardless of what would happen. God’s got this. Jesus covered us in His righteousness. He made us white as snow. David wrote, “Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” (Psalm 51:7).

The Israelites used this hyssop for ritual cleansing for purification and the ceremony to pronounce a leper healed and made clean again. David reminds us that the action is God’s, not ours. We don’t cover ourselves with hyssop or dip ourselves for a cleansing. We are not our own healers. This is God’s work.

Isaiah tells us this also, though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool. (Isaiah 1:18)

This forgiveness, this overwhelming grace, is God’s work by God’s invitation. Our God is an inviting God. He invites the thirsty to come, the weary to come, the brokenhearted to come and the children to come. Yes, to sinners, He says come. Not, come when you’re white enough, clean enough, or holy enough. Not come when you’ve merited salvation or proved your devotion through enough righteous acts. God says, “Come. I will do it. I’ll make you white like the whitest snow, pure like the purest wool.”

The enemy of God likes to remind us how unworthy we are. But God simply says, “Come. Come and let me do the work of grace for you.”

Trusting that God will take care of me is something I can do. Today, I will change the things I can, and trust God to do what I can’t. Even when it’s snowing.

REV. JOHN MOXLEY can be reached at Jmoxleydillwyn@gmail.com.