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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


Daily Boost

Jan. 22, 2010 - Cold

By Scott Harrup

The bottom seemed to drop out here in Springfield, Mo, the first week of the month. Overnight temperatures dipped below zero, with significant wind chills. Schools closed for two days because of the frigid conditions. The snow was sparse, but I felt like my face went glacial as I shoveled the thin layer off my driveway.

It’s all relative. I was filling up the car at a local convenience store and commented on the cold to the manager. It was 4 degrees. He laughed.

“My wife’s family in Nebraska was dealing with 60-below wind chills before Christmas,” he said. “People around here don’t know what cold is.”

Comparing personal sagas of arctic adventure can be akin to swapping fishing stories about the “one that got away.” There’s an element of one-upmanship as competing snow depths and wind speeds and thermometer readings are swapped from memory. A lot of folks around here still talk about the ice storm of 2007, with each person trying to convince the other that their power was out longer and their survival tactics were more drastic.

Ironically, those January temperatures were practically balmy by comparison, hovering in a dangerous zone where rain could fall with impunity and slowly freeze until the weight of the ice snapped mature oaks like twigs. People began to run out of firewood. You couldn’t buy a candle at Wal-Mart to save your life. Pets began to disappear … (All right, I’m starting to fall into that winter one-upmanship mode again.)

When it gets this cold, I try to imagine what it will be like in just four short months or so when we get our first heat wave. I’ll be cracking the car windows again to dissipate the trapped sunlight. I’ll be walking around in short sleeves. I’ll be seeing how high I can nudge the thermostat at home without the family rebelling. (Right now they’re begrudgingly layered in sweatshirts so we don’t have to take out another mortgage with the next utility bill.)

Which all reminds me of one of life’s realities. Our circumstances are as transient as the weather. If your problems seem to be a blizzard, take heart. A warmer season is around the corner. In the meantime, why not entrust the Weatherman with your cares? God shifts entire cold fronts with ease; He is able to direct your steps.

“The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him” (Nahum 1:7, NIV).

— Scott Harrup is senior associate editor of the Pentecostal Evangel and blogs at Out There (



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