Two kinds of hope

Those of us that have been very close to death begin to realize that death is not exactly what we make it out to be on this side. On this side, we are sad, distraught. We despair and tremble at the site of the suffering soul that is passing away. For some of us that are led to the edge of death because our bond to a loved one who is dying is so strong learn that death is really birth. It is a beginning not an end.

In a book I read recently, the author paraphrased a woman’s description of her daughter’s passing. The woman compared her daughter’s gasping for breath to her own breathing as her daughter was being born. I like this comparison. Should we perhaps change our view of death? Is what we view as the struggle for life really just a birthing process into heaven?

Those who can accept this view learn that there are really two kinds of hope. There is hope (with a lowercase h), which is when we hope that things turn out the way we want them to. And there is HOPE (with caps), which is when we accept that regardless of how things turn out that is the way they were meant to be. With HOPE, we can continue to live a life of joy because we have seen the light. We can even make more light for others to follow.

HOPE is the story of caterpillars and butterflies. Our sight is so limited. I think we are often like the caterpillar that believes all we are here for is to find and eat bitter green leaves. We continue in this empty pursuit without making the connection that one day we will be a butterfly who will enjoy the sweetest nectar, bask in the sun, be a source of beauty; who will spread her wings and fly.

When the caterpillar goes into the darkness of the cocoon, the story does not end. When our loved ones pass away, the story does not end. When we fall into the depths of despair and hopelessness, the story does not have to end. Find HOPE, catch the light, become something beyond your wildest dreams. Spread your wings and fly. You were really meant to be a butterfly all along.

This week’s butterfly blessing is written in honor of Danny, Matthew, and Savannah three beautiful children who have become/are becoming angels this week. I surround their parents with love and peace. And I am sending butterflies of HOPE their way!


“The Lord is my Shepard, I shall not be in want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
- Psalm 23

“Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know how to pray, but the Spirit itself makes intercession for us…and we know that all things work together for good to those who love God.”
– Romans 8:26,28


A man once had a dream that he was a butterfly. From that day on, he was never quite certain that he was not a butterfly, dreaming that he was a man. –Unknown


Lord, help us all see that we were meant for something so much grander than this worldly existence. Help us learn to see death as something beautiful and dignified. Just like we celebrate the birth of a new baby, help us relate to the celebration that takes place in heaven when one of us comes home. Help us learn to accept change and most of all accept your eternal love. Amen


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