I took the backroads to work today. And I'm very glad I did.
We got a nice snowfall yesterday, so my office was operating on an hour delay this morning. I dropped Sara off at work (the hospital) and made my way to work according to my regular schedule. I was really hoping to get a leg up on some work projects with this 'extra hour,' but God had other plans.
On my commute in, I could see a bad wreck and traffic on the highway ahead. I made a quick decision to take the back roads. As I drove along through Baltimore County, I noted how quiet things were. Very few people were out and about. Since schools were out, most families were probably tucked away in their homes, taking advantage of the unexpected gift of a day together.
This tranquility took a hold on me. I found a quiet spot and pulled over to park the car. I got out and walked. Well, trudged. The snow was icy, but I had on my boots. I kept walking until I reached an outcropping of trees. I kept going, moving through them. When I cleared the trees, I found myself at the edge of a meadow.
As I surveyed the scene, my breath slowed and I began to thank God. He covered the hills and trees and world around me with snow. I can learn a lot from that. A heavy blanket of snow gives all of us reason to pause. In fact, it forces us to. It forces us to let go of our appointments and busy schedules and reevaluate. It might be as simple as crafting a backup plan for our kids' daycare, but a heavy snowfall makes us stop. I believe God has a plan for this pause and we can learn from him in it.
You see, God is sovereign over every part of our lives. He created us and everything around us (well, except gerbils). Subsequently, he controls the seasons and the weather. We learn this in the account of Job in the Old Testament of the Bible. Here, Job's buddy, Elihu, reminds him of the truth of God's nature (when everyone around Job was telling him lies).
By the breath of God ice is given,
and the broad waters are frozen fast.
He loads the thick cloud with moisture;
the clouds scatter his lightning.
They turn around and around by his guidance,
to accomplish all that he commands them
on the face of the habitable world.
Whether for correction or for his land
or for love, he causes it to happen.
“Hear this, O Job;
stop and consider the wondrous works of God.
(Job 37:10-14, ESV)
This Scripture reminds me to stop and consider the wondrous works of God. This is a daily routine for a Christian - to stop and consider the wondrous works of God. God is already working around us. He has plans and wonderful things in place and he chooses to use us for his good purposes (even though he doesn't need us). Sometimes, I get too caught up in planning and executing to stop and consider the wondrous works of God. I fail to see the forest through the trees. But thankfully, God made me stop and consider his wondrous works today. He turned my eyes to the forest and taught me in the loving, personal way he does with his children. So thank you, Father.