I have never before dreaded the changing of the seasons, until this year. Last winter was so long and cold and snowy. I am not looking forward to being trapped between walls of white and stuffed inside the straightjacket of my thick winter coat for the next six months. Here in New York, however, it is almost inevitable. Today is the third snow of the new winter season, and it is is the first snow to stick.
It is beautiful.
Hardy roses with snowy hats.
It’s the sort of snow that is straight out of a movie or a storybook, light and soft and settling on everything in fluffy mounds. Now that the snow is here, dread is replaced by wonder–and this, too, is inevitable.
Walking home from the library, with snow falling and clinging to my coat and gloves, I thought of this beautiful passage of prayer:
How can I give praise to You? I have not heard the songs of the cherubim. That is the gift of the highest souls. But I know how nature gives praise to You: in winter I have beheld the moonlit stillness when the whole earth quietly prays to You, clothed in white and sparkling with diamonds of
snow – I have seen how the rising sun rejoices in You and the choirs of birds resound in praise – I have heard the forest speak mysteriously of You, the waters gurgle and the choirs of stars preach of You with their harmonious movement in infinite space. But what is my praise! Nature responds to Your laws, but I do not. Yet while I am alive, I see Your love, I want to thank, to pray, to call out:
Glory to You Who has shown us light,
Glory to You Who has loved us with love immeasurable, deep, Divine,
Glory to You Who has surrounded us with light, with hosts of angels and saints,
Glory to You, O Holy Father, Who has willed us Your Kingdom,
Glory to You, Holy Spirit and life – giving sun of the future age,
Glory to You for everything, O Divine Trinity, all bountiful,
Glory to You, O God, unto ages of ages.
~ Ikos 12, Akathist of Thanksgiving by Metropolitan Tryphon