Dr. Meg Hart
The Single Mom Snow Shovel Parable
One day I went down into the basement of my new home and brought up my new snow shovel. There was a huge snow storm coming early the next morning and I needed to be ready. The storm was predicted to start with some freezing rain and ice followed by at least 4-6 inches of snow. I looked out my window and sighed. My driveway was huge, and as a single mom I knew it would be me, myself and I shoveling that entire area.
I woke up early and went outside. There was already a layer of sleet and ice over the entire area. I took my snow shovel and began working. It took over an hour, but I needed to get that first layer of ice off of the driveway and steps. It seemed like a silly task since the storm was still going to dump a lot of snow that day, but I wanted to get that initial layer clear so that when the temperature dropped throughout the day and night I would not have as difficult time shoveling when the storm hit the hardest.
Every few hours I would go outside and shovel. At one point, the snow was piling on as fast as I was shoveling. Sometimes it got really heavy and hard to move. However, God gave me the strength to get it done, and because I had removed the first layer of ice and kept working at clearing the snow every few hours, it was way more manageable to complete the task than if I had let the ice, sleet and snow pile up all day. If I had not started the cleanup early on, especially with the first layer of ice, it would have been nearly impossible to move the mounds of snow, especially when the darkness and freezing temperatures hit, and my daughter and I would have been trapped.
In our spiritual lives, it is not a matter of if the storms of life will come, but when. Our lives pile up with all types of bad news: unexpected tragedy, sickness, disappointment, abuse, mistreatment, and the list goes on and on. We need to make sure we are clear of any layers of sin in our own hearts: doubt, fear, bitterness, resentment, revenge, envy, greed, etc. and constantly check our hearts and spirits and shovel out the layers with the Word of God, prayer and listening to the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We need to do this frequently so that when the storms of life hit us hard and pile high, without the layers of ice/self in the way, the effects of the storm will not trap us in. Rather, with God’s strength and help, the mess will move out easier so we can move freely and continue on the path of our purpose and destiny.
Each day, determine in your heart to clean up any sleety or icy layers. Ask God to show you any areas you need to shovel, even if you do not see any evidence of a storm approaching. Keeping the path of your spirit clear initially and daily will help you when the storms of life hit.
Reflect What layers of spiritual sleet and ice do you to remove from your life? Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to show you any areas and write them down.
Meditate Read the following scriptures, and ask the Holy Spirit to show you the life lessons you can apply to your life right now.
Luke 9:23 1 Corinthians 15:58 James 1:2-4 Romans 6
Act Focus on daily shoveling out the areas in your life (sin) that will hinder you from moving to the next level with God. The enemy will attack you, but if you keep your path clear and daily crucify your “self” and rely on the strength of Jesus, you will plow through the piles laid before you and will not be overwhelmed, buried, trapped and stuck because the layers of your heart have been cleared with God’s help.