This winter reflection comes from “The Circle of Life” by Maria Weiserkehr and Joyce Rupp:
“Although one of the spiritual invitations of winter, that of contemplation and reflective pondering, is high on my list of favorites, getting out in cold weather has always been something I dread. One of my first memories of winter and childhood is this: I was standing in the snow, bundled up from head to toe in my snowsuit, woolen hood pulled down over my nose, hands imprisoned in mittens. I was crying (I think it was more like screaming) ‘Let me out. Let me out. I’m locked in!’ The challenge of winter is how to go within without feeling locked in. Winter has much to teach us about the inner journey. It suggests a time of resting and deepening, a time to gather the resources needed in other seasons. Winter has a lovely way of calling us home to what is essential. Among those essentials is the simple act of waiting in trust and not trying to make anything happen. We can’t lock out all the cold, unpleasant parts of winter life. If we try to do that, we will also lock out some of the beauty. We can, however, let some of our plans go, and practice receiving just what is. Winter, with its sensational kind of letting go, is a marvelous teacher and has secrets to share with us.”
For reflection in solitude or in the company of others: What are your earliest memories of winter? What does “letting some of [your] plans go, and [practicing] receiving just what is” mean to you? How comfortable are you with “the simple act of waiting in trust and not trying to make anything happen”?