Wednesday, March 23, 2016


“Hope” is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul -
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all -

And sweetest - in the Gale - is heard -
And sore must be the storm -
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm -

I’ve heard it in the chillest land -
And on the strangest Sea -
Yet - never - in Extremity,
It asked a crumb - of me.
                                                  -Emily Dickenson

There are some days where the unexpected comes in, dark, surprising, crushing even. We need reminders even to breath. But when I have had experiences times like that, a single ray, a light from something or somewhere will break through.

In seminary, I had a professor who talked through this idea. When he was young, growing up in the country, he slept on the west side of the house. The light breaking through from the east would creep under his closed door, and fan out in different directions, from a single ray it would spread and disperse as it diffused under the door. A single ray started to fill his whole room, and it grew as the sun came up.

When I've had those moments of hope, even in the darkest of times, the brightness of it compared to the darkness was overwhelming. It the crushing dark could take the breath away, the arrival of hope comes like a buoy when one expects to drown, a comfort when the pain seemed too great. 

And in the receiving, the hope is a moment of Grace,a reminder that God is God and all will be okay. We may have no way of seeing beyond that darkness, but the light is coming from somewhere. "The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it." And that light has to come from somewhere. And that somewhere is close by. It is at hand, even. That is the thing to remember.

Even though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death someone is with us. We are not alone. In the dark it is hard to feel that, much less remember that. Thank you for the reminder, today. "And sweetest- in the Gale- is heard-" 

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Blessings, Rock