The last verse of the beautiful song, ‘The Rose’, written by Amanda McBroom in 1979 and made famous when sung by Bette Midler for the movie of the same name, seems particularly appropriate for our times, especially in the middle of a particularly cold Kilmore Winter:
“When the night has been too lonely and the road has been too long
And you think that love is only for the lucky and the strong
Just remember in the winter, far beneath the bitter snows
Lies the seed, that with the sun's love, in the spring becomes the rose.”
We are faced with so many present difficulties and challenges, and just doing the next thing on our ‘to do’ list takes all our effort and attention. Meanwhile, the daily news, with its updated numbers of positive Coronavirus cases, weighs heavily on us. How can we plan for the future when we don’t even know what is happening today, let alone tomorrow? It could be so easy to give in to despair,and be overcome. But the song reminds us not to lose hope. That despite today’s loneliness, the dark and the cold, the sun will shine again.
This week’s Gospel reading tells a similar story:
‘The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed which a woman took and sowed in her field. It is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the biggest shrub of all and becomes a tree so that the birds of the air come and shelter in its branches.’
What we do today plants a seed of ‘faith’.
The decision to keep going with courage, generosity and good humour waters this seed with ‘hope’.
With confidence, we look forward to, in the spring, all our efforts flowering with ‘love’.