The Snow Child and “Ordinary” Miracles
“She could not fathom the hexagonal miracle of snowflakes formed from clouds, crystallized fern and feather that tumble down to light on a coat sleeve, white stars melting even as they strike. How did such force and beauty come to be in something so small and fleeting and unknowable?” ― Eowyn Ivey, The Snow Child
It’s no secret I’m not really a lover of snow. I suffer from Intracranial Hypertension, and I can predict snow before Doppler radar because of an intense pressure headache that grows from the feeling of numb fullness to a skull crushing my brain. My second brain shunt, now almost a year old, helps some. The grey skies hurt my heart and cold almost paralyzes my body. All this makes me wonder why God has me living here in Northeast Ohio.
There is still a wonder in the first snow of each year. It began falling last night as I put Twixie out for the last time before bed. Just like a child I stood in awe of the flakes falling on my eyelashes and face. I reached out to catch one and the second it touched my fleshy warmth it was gone.
Several years ago I gifted my mom with the book The Snowflake by Kenneth Libbrect. It is a stunning coffee table book with micro photographs of individual snowflakes. Not knowing I deeply desired the book for myself, my friend, Janet, gave me one for Christmas last year. There is also a smaller gift edition available. Never before had I seen or begun to understand the intricate DNA of every single crystal miracle. We all hear the adage, “There are no two alike.” I finally believed.
I’ve been keeping my eyes wide open for “ordinary” miracles. Somewhere between real life and fairy tales there is a snow child in us all. The beauty and the ugly of our stories make up remarkable narratives about the detailed design our God is revealing in each one of us. Many times these lessons are fleeting and only our for a moment. Look around you today. What may seem cold and wet and slightly inconvenient is also a gift. What other wonders are we taking for granted because we cannot slow to see?
“You did not have to understand miracles to believe in them, and in fact Mabel had begun to suspect the opposite. To believe, perhaps you had to cease looking for explanations and instead hold the little thing in your hands as long as you were able before it slipped like water between your fingers.”― Eowyn Ivey, The Snow Child
(If you haven’t read the novel The Snow Child you must! It is truly an adult fairy tale you will not be able to put down. It will shape you and stay with forever.)
And this. Sarah McLachlan singing “Ordinary Miracle.” Way back when Team Danica started I had this song play every time you opened the site. I’m listening to it on repeat today. Enjoy.
VioletNovember 17, 2014 at 6:32 pm (9 years ago)
” The beauty and the ugly of our stories make up remarkable narratives about the detailed design our God is revealing in each one of us. Many times these lessons are fleeting and only ours for a moment. Look around you today. What may seem cold and wet and slightly inconvenient is also a gift.” Love this. Oh so true! And yes, I read “The Snow Child” (on your recommendation, I believe) and as you say, couldn’t put it down. So beautifully written.
ChristyDecember 22, 2014 at 10:52 pm (8 years ago)
I was so inspired by your post that I purchased The Snowflake for my girls to give to my father-in-law, who is a voracious reader and budding artist. I know he will read every word and study each picture. As I took the book out of the package, my fifth grader exclaimed “our art teacher taught a lesson about snowflakes using this book!” She was so excited to have time at home to study each page and she cannot wait spend time with Grandpa, discussing the book! Thank you for this wonderful recommendation and lovely post – as always.
Praise God, He is at work in all ways!