A Wintertime Shadow…

by DanWolgemuth on January 7, 2011

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
~ Psalm 91:1-2 (ESV)

An unseasonably warm December day afforded Mary and me the opportunity of a winter bike ride. We bundled in the appropriate cold weather riding gear and headed to a local park where we do the bulk of our riding. On one stretch of the ride we pointed directly north as we rode toward the entrance of the park. As we pedaled forward, Mary riding behind me, I noticed that a long and distinct shadow splashed from both of our images as we rode. Without even glancing over my shoulder I knew Mary’s positioning.

These are winter shadows. They are shadows created by a sun that is positioned low on the southern horizon. They are shadows that reminded me that when the sun is the lowest, when the light is limited, when the intensity and warmth are at their weakest, the shadows are the longest and the most pronounced.

I cast a shadow; and so do you. But this year I want to cast a December shadow. A shadow that emerges when the light is failing, when the temperatures are falling.

Many will retreat or escape from the bite of the winter wind; they will long for June and July when the demands of life are more forgiving. They will pine for the full and inviting light of summer, but as a result their shadow will be measured in inches and not feet.

When the forecast of life changes from balmy to blustery; when a blizzard is likely; when hope and promise are at their winter solstice, the shadows of the individuals with character and strength extend to unmistakable lengths. Lengths that inspire, that encourage, and that point the way toward spring.

I want to cast a shadow. Not a trivial, barely noticeable summertime shadow; but a real, dead of winter kind of shadow. A shadow that stretches to unbelievable distances as optimism slips further down the horizon.

Against the invasion of darkness, through the onslaught of cold… an image; an emerging stature; an unmistakable presence.

“… in the shadow of the Almighty…”

Will you cast a December shadow? Will you stand when the faint of heart retreat?

The sun is low… the air is cold.

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