“We’re moving to Costa Rica!” My announcement shocked my husband and my children but no one said a word. Over a warm bowl of homemade chicken noodle soup, I looked each of them in the face and made my declaration known. Who were they to argue? Like me they were fed up with the below freezing temperatures, sub zero windchills and the treacherous icy conditons leaving them homebound because it was just too cold and painful to play outside.
The bleak conditions outside, under the heavy gray clouds, left these southern, desert dwelling, island natives bah-humbugging much longer than Mr. Scrooge’s nightmarish awakening. There was no argument from any family member that night even if my far-fetched idea melted faster than the falling snow outside our windows. Our MLK weekend turned into a week of snow day cancellations at school which would’ve given my children cause to celebrate except our household was hit with a medical whiteout. So instead of spending time buried under layers of undergarments and waterproofing polyester enjoying the snow days, we spent time inside the local ER, wearing a skimpy, bum baring hospital gown while constantly sanitizing our hands and taking short breaths for fear the ghost of winter flu would come and get us at any minute (we’ve all had our flu shots-but you never know!).
Thankfully all are on the mend, but today, after yet another doctor visit, my daughter exclaimed how much she wished it was summer already. She wants the life, the warmth, the fun of what those dog days represent. I couldn’t blame her, I did too. But as I looked along the dormant, frozen tundra of our suburb I couldn’t help but think of rest. Those leafless trees, the yellow grass, and the empty bird feeders were indication that rest was taking place. Rest needs to happen so that come Spring the beautiful pink blossoms of the cherry trees could emerge. Rest has to happen so the songbirds could prepare for the nesting and hatcing of little ones to fill the warming days with sweet songs of Spring. Rest happens because there comes a time in this busy world when life begins to pass us by and we forget to slow down, breathe, observe, and be grateful.
As I reminded my sweet girl about the benefits of the hibernating months I reminded myself to enjoy it too. When the wind blows and the dusting of snow swirls in the air it looks like millions of sparkling diamonds and I’m not as cold. When the roads are snow packed and iced over I get to watch creation and imagination unfold as my three littles entertain, laugh, cook, love, and be silly all because they’re in the safety of our den. And when the weather outside looks frightful I remind myself to stay delightful and rest.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28