A tree bustling with cardinals in the heat of summer is a beautiful thing, but how much more exciting is a single cardinal, outlined by the stark snow in the chill of the winter?
It can be so easy to let the cold get into your bones this far out from the warmth of spring. I took a walk today, the crunch of the snow was so satisfying as I walked on through the quiet. I stopped to admire the trees lining the river. Their big buds told me that they are even more eager than I am for the thaw. They must ache for when they can finally wake up, stretch their arms, and spring to life. I un-fogged my glasses and could almost feel the potential energy I was surrounded by. Not long yet I thought. Not long yet.

image of dormant budsimage of snow covered bracken
image of dead grassimage of snow flakeimage of boots in the snowimage of dead grassimage of dormant budsimage of woodpecker in treeimage of cardinalimage of dead maple seedsimage of dormant budsred barkimage of dead growthimage of grass in handimage of snowy grassimage of birds taking flightimage of birds sitting in thorn bushimage of bible laying open on desk

As eager as I am for a campfire, planting our first row of peas, or laying out under the stars, I am thankful for the patience that can only be taught by a cold, unforgiving winter. It can be hard for me to lay hold on perspective. But if I’m able, it helps me to live in the present; to cherish those things that I only can on days like today: bright, quiet evenings, the crunch of fresh snow, or a single cardinal.