Tuesday, May 12, 2020

A Hope Deferred - Hanging On and Letting Go

This week I'm supposed to be in Colorado.

But I'm not.
Because of COVID-19.

My daughter's wedding plans got reconfigured to a different venue with fewer guests.
Because of COVID-19.

Your plans, too, have been sidetracked, cancelled, postponed and redefined.
Because of COVID-19.

Graduates are capped and gowned and smiling from their front yards instead of walking with their class.

Birthdays are celebrated with car parades, honking horns and waving well-wishers from a safe distance.

Food is delivered curbside or picked up or sought out like a scavenger hunt as supplies dwindle and then replenish.

Zoom knows no demographics -- families now gather on the screen, a 2020 version of the Brady Bunch.

All because of COVID-19.

A good chunk of our time is spent consulting our calendars: rescheduling, cancelling, speculating … hoping.


A long time ago I read a little book titled, "A Hope Deferred", which is no longer in print. It's a bittersweet story about a young bride who discovers she cannot bear children; the world as she dreamed it is forever altered. Reluctantly, she learns to make peace with that reality.

If the virus has taught us anything, it is how to grapple with deferred hopes -- suspended plans, stolen benchmarks, cancelled flights.

It's not that we aren't adaptable, it's just that we're weary of all the adapting.

It's not that we aren't willing to stay safe for the sake of others' health -- it's just that we've been connecting via high tech when we'd rather fall into a warm substantial hug.

We're not necessarily afraid of the endless news stream; we're simply tapped out.

Some of us are surprised we can be so exhausted after a full day of couch time - it's the laptop that's sucking out every fiber of energy.

We are spent.

A hope deferred is also an invitation - an offer to sit tight and wait for the light of day. It always shows up, spilling onto our weary bodies and gently asking us to get out of bed and move toward possibility.

And, somehow, we do.

We show up, help out, begin the next task, fix the meal, feel the disappointment and hang onto hope.


It may be muted just now, but it's always here.

When this is over, Hope will spread its wings and carry us into new possibilities.

"Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12

This blog supports www.booksforbondinghearts.com/shop, timely gifts for all seasons. Please visit the link to see my seasonal books, the "Breath of Joy! series. Breath of Joy! Singing Spring is a favorite this time of year.


  1. So lovely. Hope is a thing with wings... isn't that Maya Angelou?

  2. Love, love, LOVE this!!!!! Excellent!!!!