Winter Treasures

(This is a meditation I wrote for Forward Movement's Seeking God Day by Day book of daily meditations. It's not too late to order a copy for yourself - either the paperback or you can download a one for your Kindle or Nook. Click here for more info.)

February used to be my least favorite month. It may be short, but it seems long. It's gray and cloudy and cold and I just wanted it to be over.

Now that I've become a dedicated bird watcher, however, I like February a lot more. I can see the things in the trees because the leaves are gone. I can see the nests from last year and how they are shaped and what they are made of, twigs and fabric and paper shards. I can see the birds themselves and watch them preening or puffing themselves up to keep warm.

What's more, where I live now the bird populations actually change in winter. We have Arctic birds living here only during the winter months, and some of our spring and summer birds are gone elsewhere. I can enjoy things I don't normally get to enjoy, if I will just open my eyes to see them.

We go through all kinds of seasons in our lives, and some of them seem bleak and cold. But there are treasures to be had even then, treasures not available in other seasons. We have to have the eyes to see them, though. We have to be able to imagine that such treasures actually exist, and exist in places we didn't expect or value.

Such is life in God's time and among God's creation. It is all there for us to see and be part of, if we will, and there are pleasures in every season.

Even bleak February.