I confess, I’m a a winter whiner. I prefer the long, bright, warm, sunny days, of summer with colorful flowers everywhere, green grass and lush trees, flip fops, and sun dresses.
Winter, on the other hand, gets me depressed. Not just the cold and short days, but the many cloudy, dreary days. Sometimes in Tennessee, where I live, we go for weeks with grey, cloudy days and no visible sunshine.
Recently though, I’ve felt convicted of my blasphemy of winter and vowed to make a change in my attitude. After all God made winter for a purpose, and I doubt it was just to torture us! To help combat my sullen winter attitude, I’ve compiled a list of all the blessings winter has to offer that summer can’t bring:
- Winter Saves our skin – The summer heat dries and burns our skin. If we’re smart we’ll use sunscreen while outside, but even with that our pigment darkens to try and protect it from the sun’s intense rays. Having a few months when the sun is less strong and we’re covered up provides a much needed rest for our skin so that it doesn’t wrinkle as much or get cancer! Now that’s a good thing.
- Candles – You can’t burn candles in the summertime. It’s too hot. But the scented fragrance and soft glow that fills the house on cold, winter evenings brings warmth, coziness and comfort to the home.
- Snow – When adults hear a snow storm is on the way, we usually get anxious about how we’re going to get to work and from work, or to the grocery store. Why can’t we just enjoy the beautiful, peaceful, blanket of white like the kids do? We don’t get a lot of snow in Tennessee, but next time it comes, I’m going to try and not to be anxious about getting to and from work but to just enjoy the view and maybe throw a snowball or two.
- A warm fire in the fireplace. No one would think of building a fire in the summertime. It has to be cold so the fire can warm you up! I love reading or chatting by the fire, or having dinner by a warm fire. It seems to not only warm the room, but warm your soul as its crackling reminds you that you are safe in the shelter of your home out of the elements.
- Christmas – Jesus wasn’t really born in December, but I’m thankful the early Christian church choose December 25 as the day to celebrate His birthday. As far as I’m concerned, it’s appropriate that Christmas comes in December because it’s the darkest month of the year with the shortest days. Around Thanksgiving, Christmas lights start slowly appearing on houses. I get to enjoy them every evening on my drive home from work. The minute I walk into my house from work, I can light up my own tree to enjoy white light every evening for the next four or five weeks. Along with the lights, the gifts, Christmas music, shopping and parties all make an otherwise dark and dreary December a glorious month. Can you imagine how boring December would be without Christmas!
- Rest – Have you noticed that you tend to sleep more in the winter? During the summer, I can easily get by on seven to eight hours, but in the winter it’s more like eight or nine hours. Winter is a time when the trees and vegetation rest. Most go barren and don’t bare leaves or fruit for three or more months. They are resting. Perhaps God gives us more night so we can have extra rest that allows our bodies time to heal. By forcing us to slow down, God may be helping us to stay healthy and live longer.
I am learning we can do ourselves a big favor by being grateful for the season God has given us instead of complaining about what we don’t like, especially when it’s something over which we have no control. As I write this it’s cold, cloudy and drizzling rain outside. The trees are bare and at 3:00 in the afternoon, I know there’s only about an hour of daylight left. But my candle is burning in my cozy, warm home and I’m enjoying its cinnamon fragrance. I can see the lights on my Christmas tree. Life is good.
Jim Rohn once said, “You can’t change the seasons, but you can change yourself.” We can’t grumble and worship at the same time. The next time I’m tempted to grumble about the cold, I hope I’m able to be grateful for the day instead.
“This is the day that the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24
Still the number one thing I love most about winter… is that it’s only 3 months!
What are some your favorite things about winter?