Do you remember, as a kid, making those paper snowflakes to string up around the classroom during the holiday season, or to decorate wintry windows with at home? I was never particularly good at this. I’d fold my little paper the requisite number of times, and slice eagerly into it with scissors to create haphazard geometric patterns I hoped would look purposefully abstract. But somehow they always ended up with gaping holes and shapeless attempts at intricacy.
It was maybe out of bitterness for my lack of artistic ability that I began to believe the whole 'pretty snowflake' thing was a myth: you know, the idea that every snowflake is unrepeatable and dazzling in its uniqueness. I don’t recall ever studying a single snowflake closely enough to see it as anything other than a frozen water droplet.
But then it snowed a few weeks ago in northern Colorado, and as I stood outside waiting for a shuttle to take me to the airport that day, I had ample time to absorb the gentle beauty of the snowflake.
It had been snowing all night already, and the snowflakes no longer attempted to cover the earth so furiously now that there was already a full blanket on the ground. And it was quiet. Soundless. Serene.
A single snowflake came to rest on one of my jacket sleeves. It probably sounds like an empty cliché to tell you that it was beautiful, but that’s what it was. I can’t think of another word for the small splendor of this tiny sight.
It looked like… well, it looked like one of those really stunning paper snowflakes, the kind made by the more artistically inclined. So symmetrical and flawlessly designed, a mini miracle of geometric precision.
And as I stood there transfixed by the singular beauty of this exquisite snowflake, soon to melt, I pondered the intention and care with which God designed this fleeting, microscopic masterpiece.
And I thought… why would I ever doubt His plan for me? Why would I ever, even for a second, give credibility to the belief that I wasn’t made with the same attention to detail, the same intricacy and artistry? Of course the God who designed even the most ephemeral and seemingly insignificant earthly elements would give our souls and our lives the same attention to purpose.
As members of this community, we know we were created on purpose. We know we have a purpose. And that little snowflake provided a much-needed reminder of that to me.
Many would discourage us from thinking of ourselves as “special little snowflakes,” perhaps this perception, in some cases, leads to egotism. But I think it’s necessary to remember, when we might doubt our purpose in this world (and I know this happens more than we’d like to admit) to remember that we are, actually, special little snowflakes, designed with meticulous precision, an unrepeatable purpose, and divine love.
Sarah Zentner is a freelance writer who specializes in topics concerning twenty-something life and the Christian faith. She loves walking with others through this turbulent period of life, and she believes in nursing every young woman’s love for and belief in herself. When she’s not writing, Sarah enjoys singing along to musical soundtracks, savoring a piece of delicious chocolate, or curling up with a cup of tea and a great book.