“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.
by Emily Dickinson
Hope, what a blessing it is! The one who possesses hope possesses everything. In my mid- twenties and early thirties, I was really into poetry. I made my poor students memorize countless poems and act them out in class. Oh what wonderful memories! (Sorry guys!) I loved the poetry of Emily Dickinson, Robert Frost, Walt Whitman, and Edgar Allen Poe. I think that during that time of discovery, I loved the eccentricities of the different poets and their wonderful play with words. I love to play with words, myself!
During the time that I was recovering memories of the abuse I suffered as a child, I wrote a lot of poetry. Much of it, in the beginning, was pretty angry and dark. Pain seems to bring the creativity in me. It just flowed right out and was very cathartic.
At the beginning of this healing journey, I felt pretty hopeless. I knew that I had to step into the “darkness of the tunnel” and could not yet see the light at the other end. I wanted to turn back to unknowing. Even though it was not really living, it was familiar, and in a strange way comfortable. It took tremendous courage to enter the darkness of the tunnel that was the healing journey. I knew that the process would not be short or easy, and I was filled with dread. I would be chartering waters unfamiliar, and felt as though I were traveling with blinders on. However, hope miraculously came to me, held my hand and guided me through the scariness and darkness into the light of day one small step at a time.
Hope is not a “thing with feathers.” For me, it is a person, and His name is Jesus Christ. No matter what happens in this life that comes along and just plows the feet out from under us, we can cling confidently to the one whose feet were nailed to a cross. He has conquered humiliation. He has conquered poverty. He has conquered hunger and thirst. He has conquered torture. He has conquered death.
Isn’t it the most beautiful Truth that Our God humbled Himself to share in our (sometimes) miserable humanity? He so could have done things an easier way, but He chose to live our experience – both the good and the bad. When we cry out for help and hope and healing to Christ, we are calling upon the Savior who has been there done that.
He is our rock, our strength, our answer, our Savior, our Lord, our friend, our HOPE… A song from an old Elvis record my momma used to play just came to me…”He is my reason for living. He is the King of all Kings. I long to be His possession. He is my everything!”
Thinking tonight of my friends who are suffering – physically, mentally and spiritually. Grab onto HOPE, and don’t let go. You are not alone! Praying for you all!