Winter ice covers much of the country, for some it traps us in our homes and brings life to a standstill, for others it brings wonderment and opportunity. Winter can be a challenging season for those who live in areas that can grip us in its wrath, the blinding blizzards, icy roads, power outages and of course, continual snow shoveling of sidewalks and driveways.
I must admit that winter has always been one of my least favorite times of the year. I don’t particularly enjoy the cold and wet, I despise shoveling and get frustrated with traffic on snowy days. However as I have become wiser and truly understand how much our attitudes impact our happiness and our satisfaction with life, my beloved wife and I have discovered many wonderful adventures and unique opportunities for our family to spend quality time together during this difficult time of year.
From sledding, to snow shoeing to ice skating and playing on frozen lakes we have found wonderful and amazing opportunities within winter for us to bond and grow closer as a family. The surprise on our children’s faces the first time we laced up the skates in an outdoor adventure on the ice rink and skated away hand in hand. Our children laughing and attempting to follow along. We lapped the rink holding hands while enjoying family time together outside in this amazing earth we live on with our children’s giggles and laughter all around us. Their smiles as we continued to play together, we held each child’s hand and helped them as they learned to balance and glide on the skates, this of course while trying to keep our balance ourselves.
We followed todays adventure on the ice rink with hot chocolate and then another surprise… a trip to the reservoir frozen over with ice.. we walked gently along the ice watching all the people ice fishing as we made our way across part of the frozen lake. Our children’s eyes were wide with wonderment as they literally walked on the lake and played. They explored each crack in the ice and each fishing hole we came across. We enjoyed some unique and precious family time together, time that we will always treasure and remember fondly.
We have found that time outdoors, away from all the distractions of the internet and electronics, even during our least favorite season of the year gives us a unique opportunity to connect deeply with our children in ways not possible sitting at home. I believe much like the lesson my dear wife and I have learned in finding opportunities for growth even in the least desirable season that it creates some of the greatest memories in our family.
So it is also with our lives. Some of the greatest memories, growth and experiences we obtain in this life come in the seasons of our lives with the greatest obstacles and challenges. Finding the joy during these wintry seasons of life can bring about a much deeper connection with God and our Savior Jesus Christ, just as they have with our family.