God Was Here: Snowbound Snowblind Longing



What keeps the wild hope of Christmas alive year after year in a world notorious for dashing all hopes is the haunting dream that the child who was born that day may yet be born again even in us and our own snowbound, snowblind longing for him.
~Frederick Buechner




Within this day of early winter
is disappearance of the familiar world,
of all that grows and thrives,
of color and freshness,
of hope in survival.
Then there comes a moment of softness amid the bleak,
a gift of grace and beauty,
a glance of sunlight on a snowy hillside,
a covering of low cloud puffs in the valley,
a moon lit landscape,
and I know the known world is still within my grasp
because you have hold of me.





In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter, long ago.

Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him, nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away when He comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.

Enough for Him, whom cherubim, worship night and day,
Breastful of milk, and a mangerful of hay;
Enough for Him, whom angels fall before,
The ox and ass and camel which adore.

Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim thronged the air;
But His mother only, in her maiden bliss,
Worshipped the beloved with a kiss.

What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give Him my heart.
~Christina Rossetti 1872


One thought on “God Was Here: Snowbound Snowblind Longing

  1. Beautifully said, Emily.
    The two authors whom you have chosen to flesh out your thoughts today add much beauty in trying to add to the reality and the mystery of the Incarnation-Nativity event.
    For me, however, it is your belief, stated succinctly, naked by itself — YOU HAVE HOLD OF ME — is what is resounding in my soul this morning.
    From the time of our childhood we have been taught by parents, teachers, ordained ministers what ‘FAITH’ means. It was not until we grew in life experiences (some joyful, some bitter and hurtful) that we were able to put any kind of meaning to that elusive word – for us. Eventually, we were able to define that God-given mystery experientially,
    (or perhaps not, because we were still ‘seeking’) but we did ‘find’ a partial meaning for us. The rest would come to us in time. In the beginning it was very simple, basic, because we did not want to obfuscate or alter in any way our definition by someone else’s profound theological terms which tend to confuse many ordinary believers. It is so crucial that we define this word FAITH from within our souls, in our own words and in our own time. God’s Spirit dwells in each of us, His Creation. He understands our struggles to understand and appreciate His gift – especially when we face temptation, hopelessness, the ‘whys’ that we ask ourselves when tragedy strikes – those times when we just pull down a dark shade over our souls because we feel lost, abandoned.
    Your solid, bedrock one-line answer, dear Emily, is one perfect explanation of what FAITH means. As we travel our temporary earthly journey, then, each of us must find that answer for our self. When and what we do find will be a time of joyful, sublime revelation – a start, or a continuing of our search for all that He, the Incarnate God in Jesus, has taught and promised us. This initial revelation will confirm for us – in FAITH – that He has been with us all the time. We had been seeking Him – doubting, denying perhaps when we ran into a wall of despair -.but now we believed, we had hope and trust in Him. We knew for certain now that we had found what we had sought for so long. And our life will have changed forever.

    Thank you, Emily. I am refreshed, renewed once again.


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