Snow on the Hill

“Snowfall is delightful and welcome when it robes the brown and muddy landscape of winter in dazzling white.”


New fallen snow—there is not a sight much prettier on the winter landscape than this. Snow comes softly and silently to cover a multitude of sins.

It covers what summer leaves had hidden and what autumn unmasked and showed us all. The flaws in house paint and siding, the junk we have piled along the fencerows or behind our garages, the true ugliness of people and places, litter in ditches, ugly out buildings, decaying farm equipment and outdated autos, trees scared by storms and mutilated by the county tree trimmers who only care that trees not touch power lines.

Snow covers abandoned swimming pools and children’s homely play places and toys left out to the weather. It covers piles of useless rubble and junk with a coat of white like a good baker covers a broken layer cake with mounds and swirls of glossy seven-minute frosting. No one would see or scarce remember the reality of life in the sparkling pristine covering of snow.

Snow caps fence posts, dog houses and bird houses in white Dutch caps. It sweeps under the sparkling white rug, the old, the neglected, the misshapen and the dirty. Snow is so forgiving.

Every naked tree branch, clothes line strand, and fence wire is coated. The moon shines and makes the world look like a platter of iced Christmas cookies. The world smells cold, fresh, and spicy clean as a parlor awaiting long-anticipated holiday guests.

The birds eat and eat to keep themselves alive. They seem confused and afraid of the strange snow. The cat mews at the back door–the barn cat—the farm cat—the never social cat wants inside. The dogs curl up on the wicker chairs underneath the shelter of the porch. They look at me questioningly. “What is this now?”

Snow! Snow! Snow! It covers everything in beauty and in this way it is like the love we have for each other as brothers and sisters in this world. The Bible says we should show fervent love to each other because love covers a multitude of sins. It is stronger than hate. It overcomes darkness with its innate brightness. It sees the beautiful instead of the ugly in our neighbor. It believes the best and covers the disgraceful. It guards and protects. It overshadows the cruel and the unfairness of life. Love forgives. It bears every wrong. Love—like snow.

Maybe, just maybe, this is why I am so thrilled by the falling, drifting, blanketing snow. It is so like love. It is so like God.

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