Blizzards and Serenity

Blizzards and Serenity

Blog – 1-24-18

There’s nothing like a good, old-fashioned blizzard! I know many of you reading this probably think I’m crazy, but as my husband and I hunkered down on Sunday afternoon, I was excited for the upcoming storm. We had soup in the crockpot, a fire blazing, movies picked out, and we were ready for the snowflakes to come.

And come they did!

Schools and roads were closed all day Monday, and by the end of the blizzard we had 14 inches of snow. The winds blew like crazy, which put us in a total white-out for most of the day, and we couldn’t even see the lane in front of our house.

Yet as cold and miserable as it was outside, I felt warm and safe and extremely happy inside. I love being stranded at home. It’s a lot better than being stranded in an airport, but that’s another story and another blog!

I realize not everyone feels that way about our Midwest storms. They hear snow predicted and they immediately cringe. When I ran to the grocery store on Sunday afternoon before the storm began, I heard tons of people complaining about the weather. They were not looking forward to the impending snow at all, yet I couldn’t help but contain the excitement I felt about the thought of being home with my husband and my dogs.

Same situation – two very different views.

God showed me something pretty amazing, blizzards and serenity actually can go together!

It’s true. It all depends on our view.

I was reminded once again that so much of our contentment and happiness in life depends on how we look at situations around us. Do we panic and go instantly into control mode, or do we let it go and deal with life as it comes? If we truly can’t change something, do we fight it or accept it? It brings to mind the beautiful Serenity Prayer:

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change
The courage to change the things I can
And the wisdom to know the difference

Bottom line, I live in the Midwest. Blizzards and snow are going to happen. I can either learn to accept it and find the beauty and joy in it, or I can choose to change the things I can and move to a warmer climate. I do have a choice. Since I love the change of seasons and my family and husband’s business keep me firmly planted where I am, the weather is something I cannot change because I am simply not willing to move.

So my only healthy choice in the midst of Midwest living is to embrace it and make the best of it.

I used to complain about snow as much as the next person, and I probably will complain this year before winter is done. It gets old after a while, and winter can get extremely long. I get tired of the cold and the gray days as much as the next person. But I am trying to change my view; and I’m grateful that for this storm, anyway, I chose to accept it and even embrace the situation. It literally made all the difference in the world and made being stuck at home feel like a gift rather than a burden.

The blizzard also reminded me that things that happen in our lives can have a very different view in our Father’s eyes. Situations that we see as devastating and the worst thing that could ever happen to us, God sees as the turning point in our faith, something to rejoice about.

What we see as endless years of waiting for dreams to be realized, God sees as a time rich with learning, a season where roots of faith are deeply planted.

What we see as the end of the road, God sees as a new beginning.

The question for us is, how can we find serenity in the midst of our situations? How can we choose to trust that God has a plan for us, no matter how cold and bitter that plan may seem at the moment? Could there be an up-side that we’re completely missing?

Most of all, how can we find serenity in the midst of our storms?

The next time a storm comes your way, pray the Serenity Prayer and ask God to show you what you can change and what you can’t. Pray hard and long for the wisdom to know the difference. And if the best course of action is to stay on course and simply weather out the storm, go buy some snacks, hunker down with people you love, and find serenity in the midst of it!

Remember, blizzards and serenity really can go together!

Below are some pictures I took of the snow. Enjoy!

Hugs and love,

Jill

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