Thought for the Week – Rev Godfrey Smallman

‘He spreads the snow like wool and scatters the frost like ashes” Psalm 147:16 – (NIV – UK)

Here is a good question for the next Online Quiz Night at St Luke’s – where is snow mentioned in the Bible? Save your answers for the Quiz, but you will find one answer above. As always, falling snow is delightful to watch from inside and for the more adventurous it can provide really great fun if you venture out. We have had a fair share of it in the last week or two. Why is it mentioned in the Bible at all I wonder? The Psalmist here includes his reference to snow in a passage that is full of encouragement for us today.

The snow appears in a meteorological list of weather events, reminding the reader that it is God who is Creator and who rules His Creation still. Earlier in the Psalm we read ‘He covers the sky with clouds; he supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills’ (v.8). We have plenty of big sky, clouds and grass in Lodge Moor to remind us of God’s generous creating character, all He has made and all He is making for our good. When we can get back in the St Luke’s building normally, we can look again at the stained-glass window in the Chapel, which could be an illustration of this very verse.

The Psalm is not just about Creation and weather though. The God whom the Psalmist is urging his readers to praise, is the God who: ‘…heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds’ (v.3); whose ‘…understanding has no limit’ (v.5); who ‘…sustains the humble’ (v.6); and who ‘…delights in those who…put their hope in his unfailing love’ (v.11). What a comfort in any times, but perhaps especially in these strangest of times for us all. This is the God whom the Christian knows, worships, praises and loves – and this is the God who loved us first and loves us back, as we love Him now.

I like it when a scene in the natural world reminds me of a good moment in my life or even a verse of Scripture. Any more snow in the Bible (spoiler alert for the next Quiz!)? Could snow remind us of anything? ‘His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow’[1]. Who is this? It is the picture of the exalted Lord Jesus from the vision of John, recorded for us in the Book of Revelation. In this passage He is surrounded by the lampstands which commentators tell us represent the Church. Christ standing with Christian believers all around Him and they are shown as lampstands so as to remind the Christian reader that our role is to bring the light of Christ to our world. Now that is a wonderful thing to be reminded of, as we look at the snow.

Copyright © 2021 Godfrey Smallman, All rights reserved. [1] Revelation 1:14.

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