Anchor Ice

Who is the mother of the ice? Who gives birth to the frost from the heavens? For the water turns to ice as hard as rock, and the surface of the water freezes. Job 38:30-31

Most of us know water in three forms – solid (ice), liquid (water), and gas (vapor). And most of us know that ice floats, at least under normal conditions. Simply put, that is because hydrogen bonds that form as water freezes are less dense (more space between the atoms of hydrogen) than in liquid water. Water is sort of unique in that way. Most everything else, when it freezes, becomes more dense, and in turn, would sink if placed in a solution of the same material.

Things which are less dense than what is around them will float. Usually. Then there is anchor ice.

In rivers and streams, anchor ice forms during extremely cold weather. In fact, I hadn’t seen it in several years until recently. Since water is in motion in a stream or river, the surface usually doesn’t get covered completely in ice. But the water temperature itself may be below freezing due to contact with the frigid air. As this very cold water touches rocks or other items near the bottom of the stream, it forms ice platelets which stick to the rocks. This can happen extremely rapidly. The ice platelets and crystals stick to each other along with the rocks, and soon it can look like the bottom of the stream is covered in ice (see the above photo). Although this may just look like a picture of a cold icy stream, the amount of ice below the surface of the water is not a common sight for folks around here.

As the air temperature, and subsequent water temperature, rises, the anchor ice will diminish by either melting or breaking loose from the bottom and floating to the surface.

But at least during the time that I took the picture – ice, even though less dense than the water it is in, is indeed below the surface. I thought that was kind of cool, so to speak, to see, so I figured I’d share a picture with you.

The Lord was speaking to Job in the above Scripture. He was talking to him about His wisdom in running the universe. In the end, Job couldn’t do much more than stand in awe of such an all-knowing, Almighty God.

I’ve been there myself a few thousand times.

Water is just one of a myriad of God’s designs that I don’t completely understand. Fortunately for me – and you – I’m not in charge of things.

Hope you have a great day.

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