My family moved to the Blue Ridge mountains in late 1992. During our first winter there we enjoyed lots of snowy days but rarely did we see over four inches of accumulation. Then March arrived. They call it “The Storm of the Century.” As the blizzard moved through our area, it generously dumped about three feet of snow on us.
The following day I managed to walk a mile and a half down the road so that I could be picked up by the phone company. My employees were the ones that would be dispatched throughout Asheville to restore phone service in emergency areas. As we inched our way to the office, there was only one thing to see—snow everywhere.
I called Nancy late that day to let her know I would be home around dark, which meant I would have to walk a mile and a half up to my house this time. As soon as I was dropped off, I noticed no vehicles had traveled my road that day. The path I had hewn through the waist-level snow that morning remained just as I had left it, only a little more solid owing to the dropping temperatures.
Slowly and carefully, I began the uphill course. It wasn’t long before my legs grew tired as I trudged through the snow with my heavy boots, but the cold goaded me on. As I got closer to home I noticed something ahead of me in the snow, but it was pretty far away so I couldn’t make out what it was.
I continued walking, although my pace had slowed considerably, and then I saw the object ahead of me again. This time it looked as if it was moving. I remember imagining that the mirage I was seeing was Nancy bringing me something hot to drink because at this point I was freezing.
A few more minutes passed before I could see clearly that someone was indeed walking in my direction. As we moved towards each other, it became apparent that it was a woman. Soon I could make out the face and to my shock it was Nancy! Not only was it Nancy but it was Nancy with a thermos of hot coffee in her hand. You can imagine how I felt at that moment. There we stood waist deep in snow re-caffeinating ourselves. Maybe scenes like this only happen in Asheville.
My blizzard experience reminds me of God’s promises. We’ve been teaching our Sunday School class about God’s faithfulness in keeping His promises, a perennial theme throughout the year. Do you remember Elijah’s servant looking for a rain cloud? God’s promises are sometimes like that. In my case, they are like that small object far in the distance that I can’t quite make out and don’t give much thought. I find a promise in the Bible, but I just keep reading and never take the promise to God in prayer. So we are teaching the children that when they encounter God’s promises in the Bible, they must first believe them, and then ask, seek, and knock for them in prayer. The Bible teaches that God withholds no good thing from those who walk uprightly. (Psalm 84:11)