Snow flakes have rhythms. Sometimes they beat across the sky with furry and other times they seem to whisper and settle like a blanket swaddled around a babe. Snow can be both frightening and beautiful, chaotic and calming.
The Holidays were like that for me this year. On one hand I was settled with the majesty of Christ’s birth and on the other I was frantically rushing through all the activity. When I allowed the blizzarding expectations of the hustle to overwhelm me, hindering vision, peace vanished. Noise blocked out beauty. My heart’s rhythm became rushed.
Like Christmas Eve service. We had come from an hour and half north, through a major metropolitan city. Of course there was traffic, even though we had allowed extra time for such delays, we were late by 20 minutes. We tiptoed in and made our way along the back wall to where our relatives were sitting. There were just enough seats for my three kids and I to slide in next to the cousins; while my husband went around to the other side and slithered in next to Grandpa. With the kids settled I decided now was a good time for me to use the ladies room (and catch a quick minute to myself – can I get an amen!). So I snuck back out. And then snuck back in.
As I was just about to assume my seat my daughter whispered “Mommy, I need to pee” with that urgent look. So, back along the back wall we went. And then down the long hallway and around the corner and into the bathroom. And then all the way back, all the while tiptoeing (in heels and a wool coat). I slowly lowered my derriere into the seat only to be halted by the touch of my sweet nieces’ hand. “Aunt Brandi, I need to go potty.”
And so off we tiptoed, in heels and wool coats all the way back along the wall and down the hall and around the corner. I helped with her gorgeous Christmas gown. And then upon completion of all appropriate duties we made our way back through the clanky doors, along the back wall, down the isle and she comfortably took her seat ~ Just as the crowd stood to sing the last hymn and pass out candles. Not taking any more chances I went around and joined the adults on the other side of the row.
I had missed the entire Christmas Eve Service to the sound of tiptoed heels and flushing porcelain bowls.
I stood with my family and held my candle. “Just breathe”, I kept reminding myself. The lights dimmed and the melodies of worship began to whisper through the air. And like a silent snow storm I found myself overwhelmed with His tender love. Surrounded by beautiful glitters of light and notes of harmony it began to wrap around me. In those very few moments I saw the whispers of grace dancing in the sky, reflecting glory, and my soul breathed.
I want more of those moments in the midst of all the crazy-busy, constantly-demanding world we live in. But I also want those in my life who need, to know that I can share the gifts of love I have been so graciously given. To have the whispering dance of grace in the midst of a blizzard of demands requires a leaning in of hearts. Lean into the moment, be present today. It’s crazy, yes. It’s a flurry of activity, of course. But if you lean in with your eyes open you’ll see that both the blizzard and the gentle snow fall are made of snowflakes.