Hearts can be warm even when the winter is cold

By Curtis Shelburne: CNJ columnist

As I write this morning, the pure white blanket of snow just outside my window keeps pulling my eye away from the computer screen. The snow saw enough sunshine the day before that now a glistening crystal concert of color ripples its way across the surface of the snow blanket.
I love it. I’m not sure I’d like living where winter is largely theoretical and fireplaces are primarily ornamental. I love seasons, but I figured out a good while ago that I’m more of a winter than a summer person.
The “thermometer” on my computer says that we’re presently in a heat wave. Whether Al Gore and Company are right or not in the larger scheme, our part of the globe is definitely warming this morning. From 5 degrees earlier today we’ve broken into double digits and are sweltering at 16 degrees.
I was warm even at 5. In fact, I’ve been amazingly warm for several days now.
For the first time in my almost 22-year pastorate here at our little church, we cancelled Sunday services due to ice and snow two Sundays in a row. I’d guess our average rate of snow cancellations per winter would be one or so. Maybe two. But I don’t remember two such Sundays in a row. That was a first.
The roads were still slick two days later and our yard is still covered with the better part of a foot of the white stuff. It’s bright outside but 16 degrees warm.
But I’ve been quite toastily warm and satisfied since Thursday evening, January 18, 2007, at about 6:30.
You see, that’s when Brylan Paige Shelburne was born. Little Miss Brylan is the most beautiful living creature these two now-grandfatherly eyes have ever seen. It could be 20 degrees below zero outside in a 60 mph wind and my heart would still be warm.
Little Brylan was born in Amarillo at the same hospital where her proud father, Jeffrey, and her Uncle Christopher were born a couple of years apart a heartbeat or two ago. Jeff got his name because we liked the sound of it, and we liked it even better when we realized that Jeffrey means “God’s peace.” I still remember walking through darkened hospital halls to try to find a phone the night he was born. I needed to call my good friend Wade Aplin to tell him about Jeffrey Wade Shelburne.
Little Brylan is as beautiful as her mother, Amy Paige. Brylan was one of the only girls in a baby-boy-filled nursery Thursday night when she met her grandfathers. On the way out, Grandpa Randy warned all of those guys that he took their names and numbers.
Brylan’s heavenly Father has known her name and her heart for all of eternity. What a blessing for the rest of us who love her to be getting to know her now.

Curtis Shelburne is pastor of 16th & Ave. D. Church of Christ in Muleshoe. Contact him at