February 26, 2021

Hope Is an Open Window

February 26, 2021

By Carol Bumbalough, Missional Discipleship Program Director

One winter night, my husband, Hal, opened our front door to turn on the Christmas lights and just as he stepped outside, a small brown bird flew into our dining room. Panicked and terrified, it quickly flew upstairs and landed in my office. We immediately shut the door and opened the window, hoping it would find its way out, but it just flew erratically around the room.

For the next 30-45 minutes, Hal and I both tried to get this little bird to fly out the open window. The poor thing was frightened and confused and it kept flying into the ceiling and wall and light fixtures, hitting the barriers and then falling to the ground, dazed. We tried different approaches to coax it out the window but finally gave up. We could tell it was exhausted and we were afraid it would injure itself from crashing so many times into the walls. We lowered the window, turned out the light, closed the door and let all three of us rest.

The next morning I went into the room and the bird was sitting very still under a cabinet. It didn’t move when I approached it. I opened the window. It didn’t budge. So I gently shook a broom at it, and finally it darted out the open window toward the pine trees in our neighbors’ yard. It was free!

How many times in my life have I struggled with a problem when all the while God is trying to guide me toward the open window to freedom? Instead I keep thrashing around, running from God’s guidance, hitting barriers, knocking myself senseless and exhausting my energy — just because I can’t see the open window in front of me.

Hope is like that open window — it’s there all the time, but you have to trust yourself to it to find what you’re searching for.