"Let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream." - Amos 5:24
At some point in the recent past, the word "snowflake" received new meaning. It no longer simply describes a small and totally unique ice crystal with six-fold symmetry; "snowflake" also derisively designates those who melt and wither quickly under the heat of the "real world."
Like, you know: liberals, progressives, people who wear pink hats. The so-called whiners and losers.
The word has even been applied to a whole generation. Millennials, for some, are the "Snowflake Generation," the allegedly coddled, entitled, emotionally fragile young'uns who are intolerant of opposing views, feasting on the fruits of capitalism while constantly denouncing it . . . among other condemnations.
Now I haven't met every millennial out there, but I have yet to meet one who fits this description. In my experience, millennials might be the most no-nonsense-tough-minded-let's-roll-up-our-sleeves-and-change-the-world-right-now generation around. More so than Gen-Xers like me, on the whole.
And if "snowflakes" are the progressive people who took a beating from their husbands in advocating for women's suffrage, braved Billy clubs and fire hoses marching for civil rights and get arrested in Moral Monday demonstrations, count me in. Crystallize me.
Because here's the thing about snowflakes: on their own, they are vulnerable, fragile, and easy to melt. That much is true. But when they join with a community or a mass movement, they become a storm that can shut down a city, a state or a region.
What is snow but crystallized water? Like the prophet Amos in his time, today's prophets might declare, "Let justice roll down like snow and righteousness like a mighty blizzard."
A blizzard of pink snowflakes descended on Washington on January 21st, 2017 and on cities across the country. Because we stood together, we did not melt. We did not wither. We did not back down. History (Herstory!) was made. And the world took notice.
Be a proud snowflake. Just don't go it alone.
Crystallize us, God and make of us a mighty storm of righteousness and love.
Matt Laney is the Senior Pastor of Virginia Highland Church UCC in Atlanta, GA and the author of Pride Wars, a fantasy series published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for Young Readers. The first book, The Spinner Prince available now.