Many years ago, I spent a fall and winter at Ft. Leonard Wood Missouri while attending Army basic training. Those were some frigid months that gave me a new found appreciation for how frozen vegetables must feel. During those below-freezing temperatures however, I was blessed to have also seen some of nature’s most beautiful work.
One night after dinner we were lined up in formation to march back to the barracks. (The Army loves to march!) As we were standing in the dry frigid air of night, waiting for the drill sergeant to bark out commands to being marching, it began to snow. I noticed a couple of flakes fall on the soldier’s coat in front of me, and as they did, I couldn’t believe what I saw. Each individual flake was so perfectly and uniquely shaped, just like you see in Christmas cartoons or beautiful Christmas ornaments. Never before had I seen an individual snow flake. Sure, I knew that snow is made of up individual flakes, but this was the first time I had actually seen how detailed, elegant, fragile, and beautiful a snowflake really is. It was a scene I have never forgotten.
It’s hard to believe that something like a ski slope, a snow covered meadow, a snowy mountaintop, or even an avalanche is made up of millions of unique, individual, beautiful snowflakes. I think it’s a lot like that with people as well. It’s easy to just see people as communities, nations, families, organizations, or other large collections. But what’s interesting to me is that every one of the aforementioned groups is made up of unique, individual, beautiful people.
As you’re moving around in the different groups of people in the weeks ahead, take notice of the individuals that make up those groups. Look at how unique each one of them is and how their uniqueness adds to the group they’re in.
And don’t forget to look at yourself as well. You are also unique and valuable to the larger groups you are a part of, and those groups are fortunate to have you.