Hope being born reflects on someone’s countenance. They are alight, aglow, they have a look of fulsome expectation. Hope is like a child, tiny and hidden, growing safely within its mother’s womb. The mother feels it growing, knows when it kicks, feels the little jumps and tumbles, sees the changes in her body. There is a joy that settles on her that makes her radiant. New life is on its way. Dreams to dream, plans to plan, so much to do before the special arrival. Such a special guest deserves for life to be turned on its end and redone completely. Even the grout around the tub has to be “just so”. Hope lives in the womb of the heart. Sometimes the ache of happiness is so great it makes the tears come, the appetite fail. It’s very much like being madly in love.
For long stretches we wait, and toil, our dreams held captive in our barren daily lives and rituals. We feel like something has died inside of us. Our hope withers, our cheeks no longer bloom. The one day, there is an inkling, a hint, a chance that maybe, possibly, our life will change, our dreams can be realized at last. There is a tiny flame that ignites inside of us, a twinkle, like a smile being born for the first time after much sorrow.
I have known this feeling a precious number of times in my life. Each of my children were like this for me. My husband coming into my life after years of struggling as a single mom was very much the same kind of hope. Love in bloom is a wonder to behold. It makes us young again, gives wings to our hearts and heels, and sets our minds reeling. Hope in bloom is a wonder of a similar kind. We can dare to dream, outrageously, ostentatiously, and sometimes obnoxiously. As anyone who has has the experience of being around two sweethearts during their courtship will testify, it can be frankly noisome for those who aren’t included in the mad, infatuating rush.
Thankfully, the kind of hope I’m talking about is open to anyone with breath in their body. God has giddy plans for each one of us. He knows the number of hairs on our heads, the unique personality, the songs our hearts sing. Even when the blaring, glaring life with its thorns and razors and cuffs around the ears have all but silenced our hearts’ song, He knows it by heart and is singing it to us all the while. Everyday of our lives, He sings over us this song born in His heart and planted in ours.
This song speaks of Salvation, certainly; but it also speaks of a Lover taking the hands of His bride to lead her to the dance floor. He sings all day long, in the caress of rain on the windowpane and down our cheeks, if we venture out. His notes can be seen in the flock of birds that rise before us as we walk along, and heard in the sigh of the sunset as the sky blushes over us in the evening. Tiny discrete bouquets of flowers around a bend in the road, carpets of riotous color across entire hillsides, shape-shifting clouds that flirt with our imaginations as they fly overhead, the roar of waterfalls, the chitter of birds; all of these are merely notes in His unending love song. From the day we are born until the day we breathe our last, the notes reverberate; and He waits.
I always imagined that Heaven was like an immense choir, orchestra, and band all combined. Everyone there has a specific, individual part, and it all worked in harmony. Finally, here we get the chance to sing His song back to Him, and the words are the stories of our lives and the great and amazing things He has done in us and through us and to us and for us. He loves us all, yes, but He loves EACH one of us, separately and completely. He waits for us because of this mad exuberant love He has for each and every one of us. He longs for us to join the dance.
So the question I have for you today is this: What is the song of your heart? Can you even remember its notes? Do you recall its rhythm? Does your body sway softly, now and then, when you hear the notes playing faintly? What sets you on fire because you know, without a doubt, that this song is yours and your alone? He is waiting for you to join in His dance. How long will you make Him wait?
My beloved spoke and said to me, “Arise, my darling, my beautiful one, come with me. See! The winter is past; the rains are over and gone.Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land.The fig tree forms its early fruit; the blossoming vines spread their fragrance. Arise, come, my darling; my beautiful one, come with me.” My dove in the clefts of the rock, in the hiding places on the mountainside, show me your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely. Song of Songs 2:10-14