Monday, February 08, 2010

The uniqueness of snowflakes

There's just something about a snowstorm, something surreal and magical -- blanketed by the falling snow, patterns in the streetlights and skylight, the world shut out and promise all around... it's easy to forget that each snowflake in this panorama of beauty is unique. Every one!

It's kind of mind boggling in its own right: apart from the beauty, what about the wonder of uniqueness? In the recent storm that dropped two feet of snow from Pennsylvania to Washington, D.C., every flake -- every single one of these billion "Snowpocalypse" flakes was individual.

It's incredible! And a great reminder of our own individual place before God. Kierkegaard talks about the radical responsibility of responding to God as an individual. Brokenness hides in a crowd of others broken in similar ways, but wholeness begins in daring to be a true self before God, to stand in the divine gaze without hiding in a crowd, without using the crowd to justify condition and action.

Jesus put it something like this, "If Abba so clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and gone tomorrow, how much more will He clothe you, O you of little faith?" Also, "Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And yet not one of them falls to the ground without the will of your Abba. Even the very hairs of your head are numbered! So don't be afraid, you are worth more than many sparrows!" How much more will He care for you?

If God has created the world to produce individual snowflakes, which are here today and gone tomorrow, how much more does He relate to you, O eternal soul, spirit being?


Note: Here is a
slideshow of snowflakes, shots taken by the pioneering science-artist photographer Wilson Bentley between the years of 1885 and 1931.

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