Although the weather station predicted about three inches of snow on Thursday and Friday followed by partly sunny weather for a few days, the snow didn’t stop and by Saturday morning, thirteen inches had fallen on top of the existing eight inches and more was still expected the next two days! Although very snowy, it has not been exceptionally cold, and the accumulation of slush on our long driveway has made getting in and out very challenging at times. When it warmed up enough to check on our beehives we found a couple of them had died. And as the snow began to melt further, we discovered a baby deer that had starved to death right in our yard. But along with the hard and the sad comes the due share of joy. Jonathan has once again headed up our backyard sugaring operation which is looking like the best year we have ever had. It is a joy to see honeybees flying and deer and turkeys that made it through. We know that soon the crocuses will come up and the maple trees will bloom. For winters like this, here is a wonderful song we received from a pastor in Taiwan that is very fitting for the season. The title is "How tedious and tasteless the hours", words by John Newton and music arranged by Lewis Edson from Bach’s cantata 212.
How tedious and tasteless the hours
When Jesus no longer I see;
Sweet prospects, sweet birds and sweet flowers,
Have all lost their sweetness to me;
The midsummer sun shines but dim,
The fields strive in vain to look gay,
But when I am happy in Him,
December’s as pleasant as May.
His name yields the richest perfume,
And sweeter than music His voice;
His presence disperses my gloom,
And makes all within me rejoice.
I should, were He always thus nigh,
Have nothing to wish or to fear,
No mortal as happy as I,
My summer would last all the year.
Content with beholding His face,
My all to His pleasure resigned,
No changes of season or place
Would make any change in my mind:
While blessed with a sense of His love,
A palace a toy would appear,
All prisons would palaces prove,
If Jesus would dwell with me there.
Dear Lord, if indeed I am Thine,
If Thou art my sun and my song,
Say, why do I languish and pine?
And why are my winters so long?
O drive these dark clouds from the sky,
Thy soul cheering presence restore;
Or take me to Thee up on high,
Where winter and clouds are no more.