What I really want, what would make me really and truly thrilled with winter each year is snow days without makeup school days.
I’m not trying to be greedy or demanding, truly I’m not.
We love our snow days and all the joy of the unplanned day off, the surprise family day complete with play time and hot cocoa, homemade cookies and Crock Pot soup and canceled evening activities so we can all stay home and warm and relaxed in the evening.
But then, we wait for the phone call, the one that tells us, “oh by the way, now you have to come to school on President’s Day.”
Or, “we’re now shortening your spring break and lengthening your school year.”
It’s the payback we dread, the consequence for the rest and the fun. It’s the bad news that we expect hanging over our heads the whole time our kids are jumping around the kitchen for joy.
My sixth grader says her science teacher actually delivers an annual speech that goes something like this: “Oh sure, you THINK you love snow days and you all want to do your snow dances and hope they close school because of a few flakes, but do you want to be in school all summer? There’s a price to pay! You have to make those days up, you know!”
He’s right, of course. There is a price. There is the bad news mixed in with the good that taints it a bit.
So, it’s outrageously impractical of me to ever hope we just get those snow days free and clear. I know there’s not going to be a superintendent’s message on my phone that says something like, “Have fun, everybody. Be safe. Enjoy the day. This one’s on us!”
But that’s what I long for, and even though it can’t happen in the practical, day-in-day-out details of all these ordinary days, maybe it’s something I can have spiritually .
I want mercy, not just the trickle of it or the drip-drip-drip of it, but the outpouring of mercy.
I want the abundant grace, the kind that drenches you so much you can wring out your shirt and more comes pouring out on your feet.
I want the overwhelming flood of God’s goodness poured out, rivers of His goodness just dumped all over us.
But instead, I start expecting less from God, asking for less, praying for less, settling for less.
Faith isn’t really faith because I’m not believing Him to be wonderful or to be able or to be mighty. I’m believing Him to fit into practical, average boxes and do ordinary, reasonable things.
When God gives me the blessing of a “snow day,” sometimes I wait for the bad news mixed in there somewhere. I treat Him like He’s stingy or demanding or skimpy.
But God is abundant.
He is abundant in power, in mercy, in goodness, in peace, in love, and faithfulness. That’s what Scripture says. (Click here to read Bible Verses on the Abundance of God)
He fills us up and satisfies our souls and leaves leftovers.
That’s what Jesus did when He fed the crowd of over 5000 who lingered on a hillside to listen to His teaching. He took such a meager gift: a few loaves and fish, just a little boy’s packed lunch—and then he fed the multitude. They didn’t have to hand out crumbs at the end either.
No, they had leftovers.
And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost” (John 6:12 ESV).
Not just that one time. Jesus did it all again. He fed the 5000 one day and then on another day when he was teaching another crowd, he performed miraculous multiplication yet again, feeding over 4000 people with another handful of bread and fish.
And this is what happened there, too:
They ate and were filled. Then they collected seven large baskets of leftover pieces (Mark 8:8).
Jesus didn’t just do the miracle that was necessary or practical; He fed those people and left baskets of abundance and then he did it all again.
So, why do I discount God’s bigness? Why do I worry over my need as if I have to be the one to fill it and I have to be the one to figure it out?
Why do I fret when God gives good things, superstitiously thinking that bad is coming next?
His abundance offers us rest. His abundance means we can trust Him and we can let Him do the work and we can worship and rejoice because our God is full-to-overflowing with the very mercy, grace, love, and goodness that we need.
Oh, how abundant is your goodness, (Psalm 31:19 ESV)
Great is our Lord, and abundant in power (Psalm 147:5 ESV).