The first snow of the year!
Along with thirty other students, I climbed into a Hope van and drove to the Saugatuck dunes for a morning snow hike with the Outdoor Adventure Club.
The day of the first snow of the year is my favorite day of fall. The flakes come down in chunks, and in Kalamazoo they usually melt when they hit the ground. But in Holland, which is closer to the lake, the snow seems to be sticking.
Walking the dunes in the midmorning felt like walking through Alaska, or Tibet, or Narnia. The lake hasn’t frozen yet. The juxtaposition of the waves and the snow gave a different sense of the place than in the summer. It felt like the two opposite seasons were being joined together.
The pattern of winter and summer is woven throughout life. Summer represents birth, winter represents death, and then the world is reborn again. But in the beauty of winter, even in the bitter cold and the sopping wet sweatshirts, we see that all of life is beautiful.
So as I sit here typing in the my warm third floor room in Voorhees, I can look out the window and see where trees used to hold leaves. A few weeks back, the leaves fell off, leaving the trees bare and ugly. But now, the trees are outlined in white snow. Even apparent ugliness and death can be beautiful in the right perspective.