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On a Snowy Day

It may not actually be snowing today, but I'm still reminded of one of the few things in the Bible having to do with snow. Benaiah son of Jehoiada, one of David's Thirty Mighty Men, has one of the strangest feats attributed to him in all of Scripture. 2 Samuel 23:20 and its parallel, 1 Chronicles 11:22, contain the only two instances of the word "snowy" in the Bible: "[Benaiah] also went down into a pit on a snowy day and killed a lion." Killing a lion is an accomplishment in and of itself, but to kill a lion in a pit on a snowy day is so incredible it has been preserved in two different places for about three thousand years.

Lions and snow don't go together. For that matter, many things and snow don't go together -- like me; snow and I don't go together. My idea of a perfect snowy day is staying inside, drinking hot chocolate, and reading -- a far cry from killing a lion in a pit. Snowy days can be difficult days, and winter is a tough season for many. Heat bills, loneliness, achy joints, asthma, being unable to leave the house, and other burdens abound in the winter months.

But we can make a difference for people. We can shovel driveways and deliver groceries. We can share a cup of tea while we swap stories. We can pay bills and knit socks. There are many ways we can help those around us kill their own snowy lions, wherever the pits may be.

And we can do it all while bearing the name of Christ. We should help materially as much as possible, but unless we help spiritually, our efforts are ultimately fruitless. We must share the gospel of Jesus every chance we get. Tell about his birth, life, cross, and resurrection. Offer hope the snow will melt and life will improve. Offer words of eternal life.

And go throw a snowball.

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