The banner depicts an insect caught in sap in ancient times in the Baltic Sea. It is in the Amber Museum in Lithuania. Over time it has become a lovely amber piece. Light shines through this particular shade of amber, but others are deep browns, reds, or milky white. How time has changed the original tree sap into hardened jewels is difficult to fathom, but time has a way of changing many things including ourselves.
A glorious sunshiny day is uplifting. Light chases deep shadows away. As a child, I recall how the kerosene lamp flamed brightly amid the dishes and faces at our supper table in the evening. Water
glasses dazzled and spoon handles gleamed as we bowed our heads to say table grace. My mother’s peaceful face took on a beauty I hardly noticed during the day.
So it is not entirely the amount of light that makes the difference, but the illumination of one’s surroundings that makes the difference. It is the position and cast of shadow and light. But that is not all. More importantly, it is our perception, our openness to receive fully what our eyes see.
I recently had a cataract removed from my left eye. Prior to the surgery, my vision in that eye was blurred as one seeing through water. It seems amazing to me how small a thing could create such distortion. Colors now are more vivid, and I can read street signs again without the aid of glasses.
Sight is a blessing, but inner sight is even more as I look back at 2016 and forward to 2017. What can I see ahead? Can I predict what each day will be like? Of course I cannot. My hope is that I approach each day with light in my heart and the urgency to write and use all the gifts God has given.
Some of the highlights of 2016 included a trip to Texas to participate in book signing events for Hannah, Weaver of Life, published 2015. What began as one planned event at the Uvalde El Progresso Library, evolved into three more signing events planned by my two sisters. Especially great family visits.
My Idaho home and friends hosted another book signing at Faith Lutheran Church in Kamiah, Idaho. My two kitties, Vinny and Niffy rode out to Idaho in a car, and when it was time to return to California, we flew. It went well. That’s Vinny playing with the ball.
In August, I went on a Scandinavian Cruise of the Baltic. It was two weeks of non-stop tours, old splendor, and elegant surroundings.
In September my sisters and I gathered in Savannah, Georgia. It was a magical time of historic homes, fabulous food, and Southern hospitality. We had loads of fun.