Recent weather has certainly been unpredictable. The constant fluctuations make it difficult to plan your day, your wardrobe, family excursions, yard work, gardening... While unexpected weather fluctuations may require a bit more effort to manage your day, how would you plan to survive your day if you lived in the coldest part of the world? You huddle!
According to National Geographic, the lowest temperature ever recorded on earth was in 2013 on Antarctica at about -136 F. In its coldest regions, the average temperature ranges from -4 F to -76 F. It is not just the coldest place on earth, it is also the windiest and driest place on earth. It does not sound like a homey place and yet it is home to the Emperor Penguin. In such treacherous conditions, how do these creatures survive. They huddle!
When temperatures reach extreme conditions, their only option is to gather together. The penguins huddle, keeping those on the inside warm and safe against the harsh elements. What about those on the outside of the huddle? As those on the inside warm up, they move to the outside of the group to relieve those who have been protecting them. Those on the outside then begin to move towards the center of the group to enjoy a little reprieve from the frigidness of their environment. The Emperors move through the huddle this way, protecting each other and preparing each other for the task ahead.
Perhaps the life of human beings would be easier to live, to navigate, to face, to thrive if we huddled. If we gathered together to protect each other when life is harsh, to prepare each other for that to which we are called, maybe we’d find the journey easier. If we did life together, perhaps we’d find it is easier to do life. Emperor penguins have figured out that huddling is essential to their surviving. I believe that God created us to huddle but not just for the sake of huddling. Sharing each other’s burdens helps us face life’s difficulties and nurture our growth. It also strengthens our walk with Christ, and prepares us to go out into the world on His behalf.