What is it about February? The shortest month seems to stretch into a cavernous calendar of grey days.
Grey isn’t my color. I don’t live well in February.
Occasional spits of snowy ice combine with frigid temperatures. We huddle tighter inside our coats, wishing for a warm blast from the Gulf rather than the icy breath of another polar vortex.
Winter is my least favorite season and it seems that February stretches my barely active tolerance for winter to the limits. Every year, I struggle through it, trying to find joy and praise even while I flex my cold fingers and fight depressing thoughts.
Seasonal Affective Disorder distracts me, especially during February, and I find myself sad emotionally as well as physically. Add to that a family history of several funerals during February that left emotional scars within my memory bank. I can still hear the scraping of frozen earth as cemetery maintenance tried to dig a hole for my great uncle’s casket.
So what do I do to somehow find hope during February?
I count off the weeks, reminding myself that somehow in March, even if we have a late snow storm – somehow the abundant life will return and the sun will shine. Grey skies will morph into blue once again.
I sit in my rocker and watch the sun set, reminding myself that it’s only three more weeks, then two, then one, then a few days until the dreaded month is over once again.
Every year I ask God to somehow provide me with enough money so that I can be one of those snow bird people and escape to Arizona to stay with my cousin during February. He and his wife would put me up in their spare bedroom. I know they would. If only I could get there.
What helps me the most is reciting Psalm 43:5 over and over. “Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him.”
The “yet” will come with the next turn of the calendar. February will become March. Seed catalogs will arrive and gardening supplies will replace mittens and coats. The promise of spring will once more erupt with purple crocuses and yellow daffodils. Birds will sing and I will journal in the sunshine on my deck.
In the “yet.”
It is also in the “yet” that we wait for that eternal hope, when we leave the grey of this sinful earth and live in the warmth of God’s love for eternity. Surely there is no snow or ice in heaven – at least not in my corner of heaven.
For me, heaven will be completely devoid of death and cold, of grey blank skies that promise only icy storms. It will be a place of eternal spring, of joy and hope, of warmth and love, of life that continues forever and ever.
And I will never be cold again.
©2013 RJ Thesman – “The Unraveling of Reverend G” – http://amzn.to/11QATC1
Rebecca, I’m so sorry that it’s such a bleak time for you. We’re truly opposites. I don’t like heat. My brain seems to melt during the sweltering days of summer. Hopefully, you’re doing well today. The sun is shining. It won’t be long and the snow will melt.
Thanks, SuZan. I feel much better now that it’s March. Weird – even when it’s cold and snowing in March, somehow it’s better than February.
Rebecca, Beautiful post. For us it’s December through mid-February that are rough. So much emotional heaviness combined with the cold temps. I love the Spring – the Lent season into Easter – the hope of eternal life breathed anew and afresh. I’m in the midst of spring cleaning here. As I write – the windows are bare of the curtains and the sun is filling our front room. I’m anticipating the arrival of seeds and will soon begin plants in the house. Studying Psalm 11 this week – 11:4 reminds me that though the world’s foundation shakes around me- He sits on His heavenly throne and is in control. Blessings to you! Cherie
Thanks, Cherie. So true – that God is in control no matter how we feel.