What ice does!
Ice is hard. It is hard when you land on it, it is hard when it lands on you, and it makes walking hard. Something as perfectly normal for most of us as walking becomes a comedy of embarrassment when ice is our footing. Walking on ice makes me feel totally inadequate. I want to hang on to something that will provide some stability and aid my balance.
I take walking for granted most of the time, and that is my problem. Walking is a complex combination of muscle and nerve coordination. Because the wonderful body that God gave me does it without effort, it lulls me to believe it is easy and I don’t have to think about it. Ice reminds me how frail is my connection with the earth. The Bible tells us to beware when we find ourselves walking thoughtlessly. 1 Corinthians 10:12 – Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.
Here we are told to walk wisely: Ephesians 5:15 – Look therefore carefully how ye walk, not as unwise, but as wise. Ice puts things in the proper perspective; it causes me to watch, to be cautious, to find a source of stability outside myself, things I should do always. Spiritually, I do not want to fall. It may mean I move more cautiously, more thoughtfully and prayerfully. Maybe I’ll hang on to someone near me; surely I’ll need to lean more on the Lord and depend less on my own ability. Ice is hard; it shows me how weak and vulnerable I am.
Ice can also be beautiful. Earlier this winter as I was driving, I watched the sun come up as its rays bounced off tens of thousands of ice-covered trees. It was beautiful. That ice made me realize how small I am compared to God. He put into motion the process of coating each tree with ice — acres upon acres of woods, all those trees, each one decorated by winter, each one a work of art. How puny my attempts at beauty and wit and profundity. His foolishness is greater than my wisdom.
The sparkling trees were also a hint at what I do not know. Heaven is not a glorified earth. Heaven is beyond my imagination. The beauty of the trees served as a reminder that there are things awaiting me, beautiful, wonderful things, which I am not yet ready to perceive. I gratefully, humbly wait.
God is in the ice!