Thursday, March 16, 2017

Sovereign Snow

A new blanket of white snow is covering the brown winter today. I shoveled in the insulated quiet of the pre-dawn hours. Silence and solitude are important to appreciate God’s purpose in anything. Today it is sliding around on the roads, yet covering and protecting our perennials from the freezing temperatures. God is sovereign and turns it for our good and His glory. His is faithful and perfect in love as Michael W. Smith sings in his praise song Sovereign.

Do we run to play in the snow? Do you see God’s providential power covering us? David came before the Lord finally asking for forgiveness and cleansing after hiding in the darkness of his sin with Bathsheba. He was broken and burdened. He had been found out as Nathan told him, “you are the man.” Yes David sinned and did not follow the way of the Lord. Did that disqualify him? No, because he was a man after God’s own heart and was found out, confessed his sin and sought the Lord’s forgiveness. Psalm 51 of David tells us that he knew that he had been sinful since birth. We too fit this description, as we are not good, no one is except through receiving the redeeming love and grace of the Lord Jesus Christ. David said, “Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow” (Psalm 51:7). Snow is symbolic of cleansing and being washed in God’s transforming blood.

Isaiah the Prophet when confronting the rebellious nation of Israel quotes God saying, “‘Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool’”(Isaiah 1:18). He is prophesying the coming of the King and Savior who will forgive and cleanse them if they will turn from their wicked ways and follow the Lord.   Who is this One? The Prophet Daniel wrote of Him saying, ‘”Thrones were set in place and the Ancient of Days took His seat. His clothing was as white a snow; the hair of His head was white as wool’” (Daniel 7:9). He is writing of times to come that are articulated also in Revelation, speaking of Jesus saying, “’His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes were like blazing fire’” (Revelation 1:14).

He is the only One who can cleanse us to be whiter than snow, and forgive our sins. As I look out this morning on the March snowstorm I can see the pure white and yet burning love blanketing the dark stained earth. I can imagine God not covering and forgetting our sin, but reminding us that if we repent and seek His forgiveness that He will make us whiter than snow. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, but God is faithful and when we have by faith confessed and chosen Him and His forgiveness, He will restore us, justified freely by His grace (Romans 3:23 paraphrase).

The angels who guarded the tomb of Jesus were in dazzling white linen and we too will wear snow-white linen robes when we come to stand before Him in death or when He comes to take us home in rapture. Those standing before the throne of the Lord will be standing worthy before Him in white if we overcome in faith.

On Ash Wednesday we were marked with black ash, repenting of our sins in preparation for the Lenten season as we march toward the cross of Christ and His redeeming death turning dark Friday into Good Friday for our sakes. So may we walk in His ways, washed from our sins whiter than snow.

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