In the midst of the Civil War, when hope was so scarce for ending the conflict, Emily Dickinson wrote this poem:
“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.
Faith matters because the gift of hope is nested in our faith. Without faith, hope has nowhere to perch, no foundation for its song, no framework of reality. It becomes only a fancy of the mind.
In our world of violence, enmity, fear, poverty, and hate, faith is the only human attribute that can overcome and give us a vision of peace. But let not our faith not be passive, but constantly motivating us to love our neighbor as ourselves, to care for those who hurt and support those who work for peace and justice. For it is God’s promises of peace and justice that are our hope, that little bird that perches in our soul and sings.
Rev. Ned Edwards, Author