The holidays have passed and we have entered the coldest months of the year.
Temperatures plunging below zero and blowing snow are parts of winter that the majority of us share a blatant hatred for.
Here in the Midwest, winter can be brutal.
As I write this post, the snow is starting to pile up outside and temperatures are forecasted to remain below zero throughout the majority of the week.
It is times like these that I think about a certain quotation, "If we had no winter, the spring would not be so pleasant: if we did not sometimes taste of adversity, prosperity would not be so welcome." - Anne Bradstreet
Winter is what makes summer so great. All of those days lying in the backyard on the hammock... bare toes touching the fresh, green grass... the sun on your skin.
But, here we are today in the middle of winter. Little or no sunshine... stuck inside the house... dry, itchy skin...
It is a good time to remind yourself that before you know it, winter will come to an end.
Adversity in all parts of our lives is much like winter. Though hard times are unpleasant, they are opportunities for growth that enable us to truly appreciate and recognize the blessings in our lives.
At the time, it is often difficult and almost impossible to see the positive to an undesirable situation. But, it's the hard and bad times that helps make the good times that much better.
An example is within relationships. You may not truly appreciate a healthy and positive relationship if you have never experienced an unhealthy and negative one.
Or, with your job. You may recognize that you are blessed with a great team or great benefits after previously being in a situation with a bad environment working for little pay.
I like to think of summer as our reward for enduring the winter.
It's much like the feeling after working hard all day and then getting to finally take your shoes off. Or, the feeling after putting in a full week of workouts and finding that you have come closer to your goal weight.
How great will it feel when the first spring-like day arrives? When the snow thaws and the smell of spring permeates in the air? When the birds start chirping and in their songs is a little bit of hope?
Soon, we'll be basking in the sunshine again... driving with the windows down... sipping drinks on the porch.
Until then, I'll end with another quote, "No winter lasts forever; no spring skips it's turn."- Hal Borland.