This morning it was ten degrees below zero. Not ten degrees below after factoring in the wind-chill, just straight up ten below zero. The sound our van made when I started it to take Trey to school (normally he would drive himself but his car isn’t running right now, due to a breakdown during the last cold snap we experienced), was as if it was asking the same question I was in my mind at that very moment…”Why am I functioning in this?”

The middle of the winter in South Dakota can be straight up depressing. I’ve been able to identify a few reasons; long nights, freezing cold temps, being stuck indoors with other humans, lack of exercise that doesn’t involve a piece of machinery, dry skin, too much television, aching body from falling when I did go outdoors, etc. All of this inevitably leads me to ask the same question about this time every year. Why?

I found the answer in my devotions today and it encouraged me, perhaps you can be encouraged as well, regardless of the climate you read this in. I was reading Psalm 139. I encourage you to go read it. The following is how I interpreted this passage in my mind as I read it this morning.

Psalm 139:1-16

vs. 1 – God, you get me 2 You know everything about me 3 You understand me 4 You get me before I get me 5 You protect me 6 I gotta be honest, I don’t get it 7 I can’t get away from you 8 You are even outside with me in this ridiculously cold weather! 9 If I just can’t take it anymore and move to somewhere far away that is always warm, 10 You will be with me there too. 11 If I say, “leave me alone while I sin by feeling sorry for my freezing cold self, 12 You say ‘No Way’” 13 You created me God, You know me 14 I gotta give it to You, You are good at what You do, believe that! 15 You’ve known me since before I was me. 16 You even knew about this crazy cold day I’d be having, before I was even born.

I know, not very deep. But the reminder I needed today. This ridiculously cold day was a gift from God, one that He has known about forever, and no matter the temperature, my God knows me, and my job remains the same, to glorify Him. (1 Corinthians 10:31)

If the cold days of winter have you down, be encouraged, start that whining van (get up), let it warm up for a few minutes (pray), and attack the day like the gift from God that it is (be a light in a dark world)! God B-b-b-b-bb-bbb-less

*A special thanks to my dog Doc, who helped keep me warm while I wrote this.