Winter To Summer (The Better Than Yous)

Two weeks ago, we had a 70° day, it seemed as though Spring had finally sprung!  The birds lustfully filled the balmy air with songs of joy!  Such is a day of unusually tropical temperatures, in early March, in Pittsburgh, Pa.

That was two weeks hither, and nary a day over 35° has flown forth since (Ha, I used hither, nary and forth in one sentence). Till yesterday, and now today!  A heat wave is not made of two days of 45°, and 55° respectfully, but there is finally hope that the long energy sapping cold of winter may finally be passing!

Amen! 

Thank you Jesus!

Seriously!

This cold winter has felt like being stuck in a Frigidaire freezer in a string bikini!  Don’t ask how I know what that feels like……. suffice it to say……. I do!……… and that’s what this winter has felt like.

Today I gave a presentation to some fabulously bored, 9th grade students on Cyber Bullying…..in which I likened bullies to Hitler and bin Laden.

Is that a leap?  Only in scale.  To those being bullied, their foe, certainly from  their perspective, is such a tyrant.   Many bullied individuals have died because of it,…… so you be the judge.

What does this have to do with the weather or visa versa?  THIS

” Ignominy (public shame), thirsts for consideration.” ~Victor Hugo, “Les Miserables”

I have been there and perhaps so have you, the ignominy we acquire through life, can lead to our lives feeling like we are in the midst of the never ending harshness of winter.  The cold, uncaring, distrustful, judgemental stares, and whispering glances of gossips as they drink their lattes, ……. heap scorn upon scorn, weighing down the already overburdened soul, with life’s failures!

 

gossip

 

WINTER is much more than a season for those found out, by the self righteous glances of the super pious! The actions of the better than yous, (Terrorists to the heavily burdened soul),bullying the lonely wayfarer, into submission, to the lie our mortal enemy wants us to clothe ourselves with!

Look away from me, a leper……. don’t touch me for I am filthy and rotten and beyond redemption!

Is that what the self righteous and gossip (better than yous)  wish this person to accept as true about themselves? Don’t they realize it is summer, …..the carriers of all that has gone wrong ……need!  They need the warmth of love, mercy, and most of all grace!  They need the knowledge that despite what they carry, God loves them, He came to earth to die for them, to give them freedom from ignominy’s chains!

 

What is a decent human being?  At best a selfish soul.

 

The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God. All have turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one.

Psalm 14:2-3 (NIV)

But, infuse that selfish soul with the Spirit of the Living God, and the human has an abundance of good to give to those in need of summer!

 

Here is the truth of those walking under the weight of their misdeeds, no one has walked less weighed down than those burdened souls.

 

The only difference is one of two things. One,……. people fail to recognize their selfish human soul, and thus are far off worse than the soul drowning in winter.  For, those chilled by winter’s callousness, at least feel the shame.  It is that shame,  along with God’s saving mercy and life giving grace, that warms the winter to summer,  with His love.

 

Unfortunately the one with no awareness, of their faults and thus no shame, is never going to experience summer, for lack of a  perceived need.  They fail to recognize the winter for what it is, but are deceived and weighed down regardless.

 

I don’t know if the self righteous, super pious and the gossips are in this group, but their looks of disdain, and words of mockery, for those in need of rescue from the winter of ignominy, is telling of  1.) at least,  a lack of understanding, and 2.) at more than enough, a wintery heart, yet to be warmed to summer.  Why do they not see their error?  BUT Who am I to judge?

 

How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.  Matthew 7:4-5

 

The other difference, ……. is those already experiencing summer!  They have given over the burden they carried through their own winter,  to God who took it away, and provided freedom.

 

16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 2 Corinthians 5:16-18 (NIV)

Freedom from winter!  Summer has arrived, the new is here, the old is gone!  Praise God, and oh yeah, I gotta tell somebody! (the ministry of reconciliation

 

I quoted Les Miserables earlier, ” Ignominy (public shame), thirsts for consideration.” .  Boy does it!  We all want to hear praise, be accepted and loved, ……….FORGIVEN!!

jvj
I love the Opera Les Miserables, the redeemed convict, Jean Valjean, shares the mercy and grace and love a Bishop showed him, totally unmerited as it was!  He gives over his life to the mission of reconciliation!
His antithesis in the book and play is the police officer, Javert.  Javert is self righteous and can not understand mercy, grace and love!  His belief in himself and his ability to keep the law, and failure to accept the grace and mercy given him by Valjean, destroys him, leading to his suicide.
I can’t help but be uplifted when I watch this show, as depressing as it seems….my wife insists it is depressing!  However, I see the redemption story shared so vividly every time I watch it!  The wintery soul of Valjean, springs summer eternal, because of the grace of God shared by a kindly Bishop.   All others turned him away because of his shame, and this one act of kindness, changed his winter to summer!  Do we turn away or give unmerited grace and mercy?
Valjean’s life transforms others, and so as I watch this winter turn to summer, I am reminded of my own transformation.
javert
There are those who would have me still feel the icy burn of winter, the Javerts, who want me to continually be known for my folly! But Praise Be To God!  I was touched and changed by the mercy and grace of God, through the love of others, engaged in the ministry of reconciliation!
Ponder this over your latte, or at the water cooler, when that winter walker comes your way;  Have you been warmed by summer and need to tell someone? Will you be Javert or Valjean?  Are you still a selfish human or has the Spirit of God infused you with an abundance of good to give to those in need of summer!

3 thoughts on “Winter To Summer (The Better Than Yous)

  1. I’m with you on the show and play production, having seen it on stage three times, and then the movie… It gives credence to faith, faith that justice will prevail… sooner or later. Great Story or opinion, thank you.
    Stephen J. “Steve” Osgood.

    1. Thanks Steve. Yep can’t get enough of the story of redemption,…….. being built back up, even though we don’t deserve it is/can be a powerful life changing moment. Depends on how we take it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s