Shades of Hope

Gentle Reader,

Often depression is linked to the color blue. As in, you’ve got the blues. Such a thing makes sense in light of the deep, dark tones that the color descends into.

Must blue always be consigned to such a fate?

Consider these words:

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? – Matthew 6:26 (NKJV)

Riots in Egypt and Libya, world-wide economic crises and domestic unrest can make you want to run for the bed and hide under the covers. It’s easy to feel discouraged and lost. To feel blue. It is, however, to the blue that Jesus tells us to turn our eyes, for this verse is not only about the birds, but also about their environment.

I notice the birds of the air when the day is bright and sunny. When the sky is clear, or maybe dotted with just a few puffy, white clouds. When the breeze is gentle across my cheeks. When everything seems bursting with life.

The birds soar, dip, dive and glide across an expanse of perfect pale blue. In that moment, I am mesmerized by their beauty and their ability to perform intricate maneuvers without any kind of training. They do not strive to be birds. They simply are. They spread their wings and take to the heavenlies as they were meant to.

That is a picture of hope.

Right now, the skies outside my window are overcast. Marked by gray. It isn’t difficult for that physical heaviness to translate over into my life.  The world I see is hemmed in by clouds and the world I feel is the same. I sink past indigo and into navy.

Then I remember the birds, on the wind in that pale blue sky.

A bird doesn’t stop being a bird when it is stuck on the ground. It simply waits for the opportunity to tear up the natural runway of some field or pond and leave the earth. Until then, it sleeps. It eats. It mates. It continues on – in the storm, in the cold, in the gloom.

The bird doesn’t doubt that its circumstances will change, or even that it will endure through the present grounding. It just keeps being a bird, fully reliant upon its Maker. I have no doubt that it knows, somehow, that blue skies are on their way.

In that, I hope.



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