My wife Anita from Castles Crowns and Cottages just posted an inspirational topic very relevant to me. For I am the type of personality that needs to be reminded often about the beauty and goodness in the world.
Ever since I was a child the harsh things of our world have tended to accost my attention and cost me no small amount of emotional labor.
The first time I saw Woody Allen's Annie Hall, I had to laugh at the young neurotic Alvy Singer (Allen), so distraught over everything, even the universe coming to an end billions of years in future.
(Pause the song on the playlist, see the 46 sec video clip here then return to reading)1
In a way, I actually envied Alvy. For I was a child who was forced to live inside his head, because unlike Alvy whose family took him to counseling, I had no such outlet. And so the darkness at times seemed to overwhelm.
Street violence that's senseless as usual, industrial violence on the earth that's business as usual, profit at the expense of people, tragic -isms, hell unleashed in the name of heaven, cruel words and acts that injure the innocent, graves filled with the wrongfully dead, oceans of tears, woes seemingly without limit.
But over the years I have seen the light in the darkness too, and in the words of the apostle: "the darkness has not overcome it."
I remember when Anita and I were first dating. One day we took a trip to a beach in Southern California. The sun was beginning to set over the water, and we walked hand in hand with the water dancing about our bare feet.
Then, dunderhead that I was, I looked out over the sea and told my soon-to-be wife this: "Can you believe all the pollution we've created? Isn't it sad?" We talked about this episode later: how while she was lost in the love the moment and was therefore more able to see the beauty in our surroundings, I threw a wet blanket on the whole thing with my, "sad state of the world" spiel.
Anita tells me often that I have inspired her in so many ways. Well, she has been my strongest reminder to see the sun through every gloomy cloud.
The magic in the deep forest.
The rainbow after the rain.
The arts that inspire us in ways we never previously imagined and show us what is possible that is good and kind and beautiful, full of hope and love unconquerable.
Yes, I do believe it.
"The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it." John 1:5
1. Picture still from "Annie Hall," 1977, Dir. Woody Allen.
2. All other pictures found via "public domain" search strings.