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Posts Tagged ‘Sunshine’

I was definitely not cut out for this climate. I have an internal thermostat that registers cold until the external thermostat registers at least 75 degrees. However, I do enjoy living in an area where we have four definite seasons so I’m willing to put up with winter temps.

What I do not appreciate is when Mother Nature decides to tease us into believing the season has turned when it really hasn’t. I know she gets a big kick out of it but I don’t.

I take it very personally. I believe she has singled me out and it is a challenge this time of year for her to coax me out of my turtleneck. She starts with a burst of sunshine after several days of cloud cover. I’m at my desk looking out the window and that sunshine just begs me to come outside and play.

But when I step outside, it is not nice warm sunshine. It is frigid, bone chilling, laughing-at-me sunshine. I can hear Mother Nature chuckle.

Her next ploy is the weatherman. I listen to the report on the morning news and it promises a beautiful 60 degree day. Since we’ve had weeks of 30˚ and 40˚ weather, 60˚ sounds positively balmy. I decide to leave my coat at home since I certainly won’t need it later in the day. Wrong! Aside from fooling me, Mother Nature’s next favorite thing is making a fool of the weatherman.

The trick that irritates me the most of hers is lulling. She is a master at it and you’d think by now I’d have figured that out.  Maybe it’s my blonde or maybe it’s my age.  Whatever it is, I’m better than a Saturday Night Live rerun for making her roll on the floor in hysterics.

Just this last month she pulled her little lulling routine on us. It was February and we all know that February in the Pacific Northwest is technically and literally still winter.   But we had clear skies and 60˚ for several days in a row. I was skeptical at first but after about the 5th day I was lulled into believing winter was over and spring had sprung.

I actually left the turtleneck off and donned a silk blouse twice during that time. I eyed my closet and almost – not quite but almost – started moving the wool skirts downstairs and the lighter ones upstairs. I even got complacent about wearing the undershirt I always put on under my turtleneck.

That changed this week when I woke up to a light snowfall and temperatures in the 30’s again. I could hear that old woman roaring as I rushed back inside for an undershirt, sweater, coat and gloves.

I’m done. I’m not letting her do that to me again. I’ve circled March 20 on my calendar as the official first day of spring and I’ve freshened up all my long sleeve sweaters, tights and wool blazers. I don’t care how much the sun shines or the temperature rises, it’s winter until at least March 20 and even then I’m going to be cautious!

Oh, and by the way, Mother Nature isn’t the only one who has mastered the trick of lulling. Satan is great at it also. He loves to stand back and watch us settle into complacency and become lax about putting on the (under)armor.

So here’s my caution for today. Don’t trust first impressions or first glimpses. Just because it looks good doesn’t mean it is good. Prove it out by going to the Word and letting God tell you how to dress for the season. Unlike the weatherman, He’s always right.

God sets clear boundaries for where we can go and where we cannot go. The Christian life requires that we do not get complacent about those boundaries or get lulled into thinking things have changed when they haven’t. All may look bright and sunny. We may think we are stronger than we really are. But we will soon discover that going out without a coat will leave us vulnerable to the elements, one of which is the bitter bite of the devil.

Be sober, be vigilant: because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.” 1 Peter 5:8

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I’m sitting at my desk looking out my huge window on a very dreary day.  It’s not storming, it’s overcast.  It’s not pouring rain, it’s a light drizzle.  It’s not dark but it’s not light either.  It’s gray.  It’s one of those days when your interests and emotions are not stirred in the least.

Bright sunshine always makes me long to get out in it, walk or garden or jump on the motorcycle.  Raging storms always send me into action repairing damage, bolstering up, hunkering down.  But days like today – they are uninspiring.  I don’t know what I want to do.

Life is so like that, isn’t it? There are good days when I want to shout and sing.  I have more energy than I can harness.  I want to have fun, accomplish things, be with people, sweep – anything that means movement.  There are stormy days of crisis when I have no choice but to jump to action. I find myself forced into fighting back, pushing through, climbing out.

But many of my days are like today, just days when nothing happens to fuel my fire. I don’t want to make plans for lunch.  I don’t want to think about the evening activities.  There’s just nothing that sounds appealing when surrounded by gray.  Even writing is hard because so much of my inspiration comes from my environment and no one wants a scene depicting a day with no extremes. I would call this a not bad, not good, middle of the road, no reason to get excited about anything day.

Here’s the scary thing about blah days.  On bright and beautiful days I am inspired to pick up my cross and follow Him.  In the midst of a big storm I am committed to pick up my cross and follow Him.  But on gray days, like everything else, I don’t want to pick up anything or follow anyone. 

I wonder if David’s day was gray when he let his army go to war without him and in his listlessness found himself pacing his roof top.  I wonder if gray days were the ones where Solomon looked beyond the borders and saw more color in foreign women.  Scary thoughts.

A gray day plan is critical if I am to keep myself on the narrow road, fully focused on moving forward and not sideways, or worse yet, standing still.

1)   Find purpose in every day. I must choose actions even on gray days that lead me forward.  Reach out to someone, pray about something, focus on a scripture, clean something, write something – do something I can look back on and feel good about.  Prov 16:3  Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.  Prov 3:6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.

2)    In a world of overstimulation, remember that God calls me to commit and to be diligent every day no matter the weather.  Col 3:23  Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as if working for the Lord and not for men. 

3)    Give thanks even when it’s not exciting.  1 Thess 5:18  Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

4)    Remember glorious sunshine of past days that set my feet to dancing.  And remember raging storms that strengthened my grip on His mighty hand.  I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago.  I will consider all your works and meditate on all your mighty deeds. 

In case you’re interested, my plan for lunch today includes my umbrella, my sweater and my Bible.

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