Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Pictures of Hope

I know that if you don't have anything good to say you shouldn't say anything at all, as I use that phrase quite often with my three kids. Usually when you hear that something frustrating is going on. That's not how it came to me today, though. My mind has spent the better part of the day attempting to figure out words for times when words just won't do the job. Today I thought of "not saying anything at all" because the words I wanted did not come. My brain never thought them up.

As I sit in my den, a fire going in the fireplace, Sadie balled up in a pile of old blankets and my family all safe within earshot; a dear friend is saying good-bye to the love of her life, best friend, awesome husband, father of four adult children and soul mate. Today she gathered her family together for their circle to be broken. Today she realized that the race was over. There aren't any good words for that.

And then it seemed that wherever I went today I heard another sad story, another race lost too soon, another tragedy. Three different friends said to me today, "It just seems like there are too many bad things happening right now." Agreed. It's always hard to come up with the right words when 'bad things happen to good people' and always will be. Not much to say when the world gets kicked out from under someone. Nothing we can do to make it right. My brain just kept reminding me of that today and explaining to me over and over again that there was nothing to 'blog' about on this particular day. "Maybe this is THE day to reach people with the perfect message" I explained to my brain. "Yeah, right" my brain sarcastically screamed back, "you don't have the words."

My brain was right. I don't have the words to make things right. I have faith, I have hope, but not words. Sometimes we're just stuck in the bad until glimmers of the good come back. . . and then I realized that glimmers of the good was what I had! "A picture is worth a thousand words" right? I researched the origin of that phrase and found that it was originally on a streetcar advertisement. Apparently the literal translation of the 'Chinese Proverb' was A Picture's Meaning Can Express Ten Thousand Words. Over the years the actual message was that words and pictures work together to give meaning. Okay, I decided, I know what I wish I could say with words, and I have plenty of pictures. I want to give a message of hope, glimmers of hope, until the good comes back.

Here are but a few faces full of hope (and joy and laughter and faith and love). May this small picture express ten thousand words of hope, a message of love to all who suffer with sadness on this night. The good will come back . . . look at these faces.

1 comment:

  1. I think "press pause" is a perfect phrase on a day like today. Sometimes, simply reflecting on our own lives reminds us that even in times of despair, God is still so good. Maybe it's the questions we ponder that draw us closer together. My favorite nugget from David Stillerman's blog are his own words, "laugh as much as you can." Simple, yet profound. Laughter heals the soul and celebrates life. Maybe his gift to us was to appreciate the comfort of our loved ones and to never forget the power that laughter has on our spirit.


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