And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. Matthew 2:11
Consider the last few days in this month of December. Lots of people are talking about “holidays” and Christmas. Many people appear to worship Christmas instead of worshiping Christ. It is an easy thing to do. There are holiday parties, travel to grandparents, gift exchanges and more. I enjoy the holiday decorations, lights and nativity scenes we see all over the place. The movie industry, commercial sales industry, and society as a whole are celebrating. But, it is clear they are celebrating something other than the events in the Bible. The busyness of Christmas can give us blurry vision.
When the wise men saw baby Jesus they kneeled down to worship Him. They did not loose sight as to why He was here and what Jesus was doing on the earth. Just like when the cold temperatures outside and the warm temperatures on the inside causes the windows to fog up sometimes, we can have a hard time seeing Christmas for what it really is. There is such a disparity in the perceived “reasons for the season” in the world today.
Pray and ask the Lord to help you not loose sight or have blurry vision during this holiday season. With all the busyness and possible distractions of this season, take some time to kneel in prayer, thanking and praising God for His Son and our Savoir Jesus, the Christ.
Today as we prepared for this work / school day, the temperature outside was well below 0. In fact the “feel” temperature, factoring in the wind, was a brutal minus 25. The Lord sends the seasons, and cold is included. Some schools close because they do not want their students waiting outside for the school bus. Going to school or work is not the issue; it is waiting outside that can be harmful. No matter where you live, it is good to have a plan for dealing with the sub-zero temperatures. At minus 25, exposed skin can become frostbitten in 20 to 30 minutes. We must still go to work or school; and do not want to miss worshiping the Lord at church.
Peter was warming himself by a fire of coals in John 18:18 which says: “And the servants and officers stood there, who had made a fire of coals; for it was cold: and they warmed themselves: and Peter stood with them, and warmed himself.” He was trailing Jesus and following the Lord as He was being “tried” just before going to the cross. Coals and building spontaneous fires may not work in our society today, but there are a few ways we can ensure warmth. Even though Peter is about to deny Christ, he is following the Lord on a cold night. We want to follow Jesus too. Cold weather does not have to stop us.
Here are some ideas to help stay warm and safe on minus 25 days:
Bundle up. 3 layers (tops and bottoms) can really help a person stay warm. This is clothing that can remain on you, even while in the building at school or work. The extra warm socks are great on days like this.
Dry your hair. Allow to “air dry” or use a hair dryer. No one should go out with wet or even damp hair.
Wear a winter coat.
Wear gloves. There are many different levels of insulation available in gloves today.
Wear a scarf. Scars are helpful for children too. On days like this, we cover our faces(mouth and nose) with scarfs.
Wear a hat. Much heat escapes through the top of the head. A hat is a great way to keep the body temperature up.
Wear earmuffs. Sometimes the ears need extra protection. Scarfs can also be used for the ears.
Plan ahead. Putting all of the above clothing on, and wearing the extra layers will take additional time in preparation, and even assimilation after you arrive at your destination.
Warm up the car. Give at least 10 minutes head start to your car to warm before you venture out.
Have “HotHands” hand warmers in your car. These are handy warmers in a small package that can really help. We carry these in the event that our car is in an accident or will not start.
Have blankets in the car. These would come in handy in the event of an accident or the car not starting while out.
Stay hydrated. Be sure to have taken in plenty of fluids before venturing outdoors. Keeping the “insides” of your body functioning can help you stay warm.
Walk fast. Moving from the vehicle to the building you are entering should not take a lot of time. Move fast, but safely, considering the possibility of ice or snow on the ground.
Use lotion. Our hands can use the extra protection hand lotion provides. Even face creams can help our faces and necks against the coldness. If going to be out for an extended time (not recommended) use sunscreen.
Perhaps you know of other ways to plan for the bitterly cold days. Always take into account your current state of health and the doctors’ orders if you are sick. If you know your car will not start or is having battery issues, correct those issues before traveling. In a normal circumstance, we should plan ahead and continue to serve the Lord in spite of the cold. We can still follow Jesus.