Snowflake Bentley

After church this morning, after lunch and after an afternoon nap by the fire, I went to Oak Point Preserve and met Snowflake Bentley.  

One of my favorite things about Boothbay Harbor is how close I live to the Oak Point Preserve and how much I enjoy the Storybook Trail. 

After a morning sermon in which I shared my struggles that we all know about sometimes being able to see all is well and sometimes not seeing that at all, I was inspired by what Snowflake Bentley teaches about seeing.  

As a young boy his utter joy and delight was in the wonder of snow. He followed his joy into the discovery of noticing, seeing, recording and sharing the gift of snowflakes.  No two alike.  Each a wonder.    

Though not completely understanding, his parents nevertheless supported his quest and invested their savings in buying him a special camera to record what he saw.  Taking pictures of snowflakes is not easy.  It requires a cold barn, lots of patience and slow work. And he believed, work that mattered.  

I love what he wrote about his life’s work of sharing what he saw, 

“The average farmer gets up at dawn because he has to go to work in the cow yard.  I get up at dawn, too. But it is because I want to find some leaf, hung with dew; or a spider web which the dew has made into the most delicate ropes of pearls….I take my camera with me, get down on my knees in the wet grass, and photograph these exquisite bits of nature.  Because I do this I can show these lovely things to people who never would have seen them without my help.  They will get their daily quart of milk, all right.  Other farmers will attend to that.  But I think I am giving them something which is just as important.”

It makes me wonder, what is something that we might share with others that they might never see without our help?  

What is our bit of noticing that we can help each other notice?  

What if we believed like Snowflake Bentley that the sharing of what we see and the wonder of what we love is one of the greatest gifts we can offer one another.  

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