We live in the shadow of war. We pray and work and speak and plan in the shadow of racism. Our children are growing up in the shadow of our personal and collective anxiety. This is a season of shadows.
I took this photo at about 3:15 pm today. The sun was already very low in the sky, and the shadows long on the ground. Experts say that the earliest sunset will be on December 8th in Boston, so we’re getting close. The short days tempt me to hole up. Let me just put on my slippers, make some tea, sit down, and stay there till, say, Easter. I’ll watch some period dramas, catch up on Real Simple, and keep the curtains closed till the shadows go away.
But, of course, the shadows that matter won’t go away if we are all hunkered down at home. Sure, the seasons will change, but the atmosphere of our minds and those of our children, and the prospects for a joyful future, will only change if all of us show up. Show up with our spiritual flashlights, lanterns of determination, and candles of care.
So this Thanksgiving week, I offer my gratitude for the people I know who are shadow-slayers. People like Raymond Fox, who brings special needs WHS students to our church every Tuesday to learn vocational skills. And people like the organizers of the Watertown Overcoming Addiction campaign. And Danielle DeMoss, the town’s Social Services Coordinator, to whom I’ve referred lots of people in lots of need.
Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving, despite the shadows, and looking forward to hearing your stories of light and hope in the darkness,