by Cynthia Ruchti

I visited friends in Texas this January, grateful to see them and almost as grateful to exit the snow and ice covered bitter cold of Wisconsin for those few days.

During an especially warm stretch, my friend and I took long walks, both in the countryside and around her neighborhood. I stopped often to take photos of what might have seemed common to her but registered as remarkable to me, the one weary of the bleak midwinter.

I had to control myself to keep from filling my camera phone with images of every green tree. My friend, who’d lived in southern Texas for years, said, “I always thought of this time of year as colorless, with many of our trees losing their leaves. Until you got so excited about them, I didn’t realize how many stay green.”

Color means so much to those who have lived without it…even for a season.

Faith means so much to those who have lived without it…even for a season.

Many of those with whom we cross paths every day live in the bleakness of life without Christ. And we who follow Him too often fail to appreciate the abundance we enjoy, an abundance they crave.

We pay attention when we come in contact with those who are new to faith. Their exuberance, their sense of wonder and awe feed our own faith and remind us how privileged we are to live in this place of grace. We’re reminded when our readers find what we thought a simple principle life-altering.

Like a wise tour guide, I want to be counted among those who don’t walk past the delights that make this place of grace remarkable, but who take care to point them out to those craving the color.

Ephesians 3:17-19 NLT–“I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.” 

What’s one delight you intend to point out to the bleak and world-weary around you?

Award-winning author and speaker Cynthia Ruchti tells stories hemmed in hope. She writes novels, novellas, devotions, and nonfiction. Her latest releases are All My Belongings and Ragged Hope: Surviving the Fallout of Other People’s Choices. She’s looking forward to the May release of another novel–As Waters Gone By–and the July release of Tattered and Mended: The Art of Healing the Soul.