I’ll admit it; cloudy, rainy, tiny winter days get me down. I’m a sun man.

Spending decades in studios that are soundproof, light-proof and nature-proof has given me a craving for all things outside. This in spite of the fact that I’m allergic to a large number of said outside things. It makes me crave light like chocolate.

Sunshine In My Heart

But I can’t change winter nor afford to chase sunshine and fair skies around the globe. Though I can dream. As far as practical solutions, they have to come from inside me. I have to find the sunshine in my heart. (Cue music)

I know how this sounds – the eternal sunshine of the optimistic mind – but it’s more like cranking an old car on a cold Monday morning to go work. Even when you get there, you’re still there.

It’s like exercise. It hurts on the way to making you some form of better. Although, never quite the amazing form that I have in mind when I’m picking up stubborn pieces of metal and smelling of gym. But it is, in the cold, dark morning of reality, the thing that works. Health hurts. Go figure.

The Good News Is Not On The News

When I wake up with vigor, bound into the kitchen and perform the crisp, practiced, artful moves of making my first aromatic latte of the day . . . Okay, when I stand at the counter and try to remember whether I put water into the coffee maker or am about to, then do it for the second time, then make my prescribed oatmeal more aromatic by sprinkling enough cinnamon on it to make me sneeze.  In any case, I feel somewhat obligated to connect with the greater world by reading the news.

It’s a filthy habit. I’m trying to quit.

There will be no good news, which means it’s a lie. It’s slanted, politicized, sensationalized, ruminated, brewed and processed like a meth lab. It’s designed to grab our eyeballs, spike our emotions and addict us – oh yeah, and sell us stuff. So, why do it?

Good question. I want to make sure no one started a war overnight. I also need reports on the war that is happening now, the war of ideas aimed at the hearts and minds of America. But there will be no good news here because peace does not trigger us like danger. Here’s the daily truth I find.

It’s up to me to bring the sunshine.

Good news is out there every day. It is quiet and peaceful and loving. It doesn’t demand things or undermine things. I just have to look. Perhaps I should say seek.

There was a lot of it on Facebook yesterday. A lot of husbands declared love for their wives and children. Don’t know why that job falls mainly to husbands, but it does and they did. We are all responsible for bringing the light to a dark world.

People posted pictures of dogs and amazing nature scenes and jokes. Yes, they promoted projects and we had to carefully step through a mire of ads, but on the whole, there was a lot of sunshine spread by regular folks. Thanks!

The other side of my phone

But online is barely a beginning. Hidden just on the other side of my phone is a love letter from God that never ends. The rain falls, not for me, but for the trees and plants that keep me alive. This is a day plants celebrate and grow. They’re taking care of us all but they never complain about it.

I do not worry that the sun will never shine again or that the winter will be endless. Even now, birds are beginning to pair up and buds are beginning to swell. Annual flowers are nearing the end of their rest before showing off their spring colors.

I know all of this, but I don’t have to see it.

We are all in the business of finding courage.

On the dark days, the rainy days, the bad news days, I could easily get distracted and focus on the wrong thing. It’s effortless and a lot of people would help me lose focus. It’s their job to stir my fears.

But it’s my job to find courage. No one else’s. I, alone, choose what I see. Who I see. And why.

The lesson of winter is that some lights shine brighter in the darkness, their glory revealed in the contrast. The death of winter clears the path for the resurrection of spring.

If we have eyes to see.

From the winter snow, I can see the spring flowers bloom with the eyes of faith. From midnight the eyes of hope see the coming dawn.

Courage sees the vision of coming victory beyond the looming wrath.

And coffee. Ah, coffee sees all.


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