“As I looked,
“thrones were set in place,
and the Ancient of Days took his seat.
His clothing was as white as snow;
the hair of his head was white like wool.
His throne was flaming with fire,
and its wheels were all ablaze.
A river of fire was flowing,
coming out from before him.
Thousands upon thousands attended him;
ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him.
The court was seated,
and the books were opened.
- Daniel 7:9-10
I turned around to see the voice that was speaking to me. And when I turned I saw seven golden lampstands, and among the lampstands was someone like a son of man, dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his chest. The hair on his head was white like wool, as white as snow, and his eyes were like blazing fire. His feet were like bronze glowing in a furnace, and his voice was like the sound of rushing waters. In his right hand he held seven stars, and coming out of his mouth was a sharp, double-edged sword. His face was like the sun shining in all its brilliance.
- Revelation 1:12-16
“Everyone begins as a child by liking Weather. You learn the art of disliking it as you grow up. Haven’t you ever noticed it on a snowy day? The grown-ups are all going about with long faces, but look at the children — and the dogs? THEY know what the snow’s made for.”
- C. S. Lewis, That Hideous Strength
Children and dogs know what snow is for, but the two Scriptures make references to snow while everything else in the vision is hot, fire, ablaze. It makes one wonder if God knows what snow is for. But as I ponder and pray on the topic, I realize that in the next life we will not suffer from the pain of temperature extremes.
You may think that I have lost what little sanity I had left by writing about snow in mid-August, but this post, in its way, is a post of Hope.
I grew up in Mississippi. My mother was convinced that the chief cause of all illness was air conditioning. Being constantly overheated may have caused my heat stress disorder and may have been a contributing cause to my insomnia. I didn’t know about the heat stress disorder until a medic in the Army made me sit under a tree and drink lemonade during an exercise. I was getting too hot, but for me, that was normal.
I prayed that if I ever got out of the heat of the South, I would never complain about the cold. Odd, I moved to Pennsylvania and went to work for an engineering company that designed and constructed industrial furnaces. The company made me the furnace operations expert (training manager). As a friend / customer once told me, weather and climate make no difference, it is always 130◦F (54C) next to the furnace.
I had a construction safety job for nine months in Florida, a few years back. Most days, I wore a high visibility (Hi-Viz) T-shirt. I did not wish to tan too much, so I used the highest SPF sunscreen that I could find. In the hot sun, the sunscreen lotion felt like bacon grease sizzling on my arms. It took years for the skin damage to fade. I doubt if it has totally gone away.
Getting back to my promise in my prayer, I have never complained about shoveling snow. I have never complained about the cold. My favorite response when others complain is “It’s a mite brisk today, isn’t it?” That response is rarely made in temperatures above 10◦F (-12C). I will admit that I have prayed that the infrequent dips into the single digits (F) or below do not last long. Our fuel bill skyrockets when that happens.
It is odd. The people that I meet in Pennsylvania constantly complain about the cold. They whine when the temperature in our area is a blissful 60◦F (16C) and Houston, Texas records a temperature of 90◦F (32C) that same day, as if the Houston temperature is better. They wouldn’t notice if the temperature was not so different. Then again, my neighbors complained within the past week about it being so hot that you couldn’t breathe.
Maybe, us adult humans just don’t like the weather, whatever it is.
But children and dogs splash in puddles after a rain. They romp through snow that half covers them. They slide on the ice. The temperature does not seem to phase them as long as they are having fun.
Maybe that’s a view of Heaven, seeing the good in everything. God created the earth and called it good.
Soli Deo Gloria. Only to God be the Glory.