The entire city shut down this week. Nashville doesn’t handle bad weather well. I am not sure if it’s because we’re in the South (I am a Southerner, so I can say that fully) or if it’s because so many people that live here are from elsewhere, where they may never see weather like this. Whatever the reason, when we got a mix of sleet, ice, snow and freezing rain this week the city flipped out. Across the nation everyone’s been dealing with this winter weather in one way or another, so you can all commiserate. this week proved to be too much for us all though it seems. No one could handle it well, least of all me. It turned from a calming peace of a couple of days off, to the week which wouldn’t I couldn’t dethaw. I kept finding myself in this place of bitter icyness. I simply could not dethaw from the weather, from my head and from my heart. Have you ever encountered that? Where all you could see what the growing hardness but could simply do nothing to stop it? I found that I kept climbing back into this igloo this week after poking my head out. All I saw was bleakness running on for endless miles ahead and I welcomed it. Things were abounding where I would see winter’s firm grip on my heart and situations. A frozen state of mind that simply could not warm to anything. It’s sad to even type those words but that’s where I have been. I think we too often don’t talk about when we feel closed off, hardened by life. We instead only want to point it out in others and move along. Telling them simply to “straighten up and get over it” as if those words are helping a situation or season of life. I am thankful for friends who allow me to be in this season without judgement or harsh words, but instead words of encouragement, of support. Words that affirm that this is a season and not forever. Prayers of perspective instead of gossip and whispers. Friends that take time to understand rather than pass the buck of fault, seeking healing rather than wounding. I am also so very thankful for this season of life. While difficult, trying and tense it has show me that springtime is coming. That I have to navigate the icy paths of winter in order to get new life springing forth. I hope that breathes hope into someone else today, as it did me. Instead of an icy chill of demeaning words or judgement, let the warmth of the hope of spring blow into your heart as it did mine. You don’t have to be strong for tomorrow, simply in today. You merely only need to grasp today as you were created for it, and it was made for you to live fully in. Soon enough spring will be here.