Windows of hope

Mount Angel Abbey, St. Benedict Oregon
The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is
to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone
with the heavens, nature and God.
Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and
that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple
beauty of nature. I firmly believe that nature brings solace
in all troubles.  Anne Frank
When I read this my heart aches for little Anne, how much strength and wisdom she had. I wish I she could have lived to walk out of her attic and sit at peace under her beloved chestnut tree. Not too long ago the 180 year old tree that Anne gazed at from her window fell over in a storm. I believe she clung to that tree because it represented life. To me it says a lot about her character, that she could hope in anything at all in her situation.
“Our chestnut tree is in full blossom,” Anne wrote in her diary in May 1944. “It is covered with leaves and is even more beautiful than last year.”
I think we are creatures of hope by nature. It’s grafted into us by God as part of our blueprint. It is the only thing that explains why people don’t give up, why we continually strive for survival, for life, to persevere in even the most dire circumstances.
There was a time in my life where I was swimming in grief…….I would drive around aimlessly at night, not knowing where to go because everywhere I went my sorrow went with me. My family was dealing with their own sadness so I didn’t want to heap anymore on them. There were friends that welcomed me into their homes and I never forgot them for it.
On one particularly foggy night around Christmastime I was out for one of my drives that went nowhere when I rounded the corner and saw a little house that I had always admired because the people who owned it loved it and decorated it for every holiday. It wasn’t big, it wasn’t modern or luxurious, it was an older home on a corner lot, just a little cottage duplex…….but that night as I rounded the corner, it was resplendant, a jeweled princess ready for the ball!
It sparkled with white twinkling lights all around, and each window lit from within by the glow of a candle. At that moment it was my little port in the storm, my own personal lighthouse of hope. A small candle was lit in my heart that night, God whispered:  “I am with you and I have given you this little gift to let you know that sorrow doesn’t last forever; on the other side of it is joy“…….I clung to that hope like Anne to her chestnut tree.
Since that time many years ago, I have kept candles in the window of just about every home I have had…..to remember. 
” May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in you.” Psalm 33:22

2 thoughts on “Windows of hope

  1. LORI,
    So beautiful, so wonderful, so deep, so touching. May everyone light a candle of some kind. Out my front living room window is a tall magnolia tree with three bird feeders. Birds are God's little visiting gems. I sit in my recliner and watch them everyday in moments of prayer and peace.
    In Jesus,
    Bill

  2. Bill, I love your comment about birds, yes they are little visiting gems..I call them God ambassadors of praise! Your are blessed to have a tree out your window. A blessed Sunday to you and yours. Lori

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