“Avalanche” is my favorite album by Sufjan Stevens. Last year while trekking in the Himalayas I was able to see my first avalanche, though I heard it first. It was great, as I was safe. Now in Colorado exploring the back country with my snowboard a little (very little) I’m learning more about the conditions that could cause an avalanche. While hiking in it’s common to dig a “snowpit” this allows you to see the conditions of the snow, primarily the way the snow has layered. Through out the season layers build and though the top layers may be bonded well the early layers often bond poorly due to inconsistent temperatures during the beginning of winter. Now usually if you’re staying below tree level these conditions have a nominal effect. The trees help to keep the snow from cracking and sliding much in the same way they keep mudslides from occurring. But If you’re going high or going steep your observation skills better be savvy.
An avalanche of faith: The first layer of any pursuit of faith, when the first snows of Gods grace began to fall, was quite warm. The fires of hell surrounded me, they were threatening my eternal soul and were consuming every friend I made in high school. How I would weep for their souls (and gloat a little for my own). The message of Gods love began to deepen in my life, all along however was the heat of hell flame crystallizing and confusing my foundations.
Now later in the season as people have trodden over and through this grace my faith has cracked and slid. All that remains is below.
And He said to him, ” ‘YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:37-40 NASB)
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. (John 13:34 NASB)
If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. ……”This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you. (John 15:10, 12-14 NASB)