That Thing Called Hope
The old Church in our High School premises, built by the Britishers was open to all and we were God’s regular visitors. The ancient English building with beautiful stained glass windows was dark and cosy, with pictures and statues of Jesus and Mary. When I was a child, I really wanted to believe in ‘A Personal God’. A Personal God is not just the God that created the world but also, God that took care of personal matters of each of us mortals. My best friend and I would sit there for hours because we both loved dark, silent places where we could talk in whispers.
We wrote letters to God and hid them between the old bricks of The Church hoping that God would read them some day. We prayed for each other. We prayed to God to fill each other’s life with everything that’s missing. We thought praying for each other was noble and that way God would know we were not selfish.
Time passed by, we grew up and school was soon over. ‘A Personal God’ was nothing more than Santa Claus to us now- imaginary.
Today I stand in the same Church where the happy ghosts of our childhood memories continue to talk in whispers. I stand here dressed in a lavender gown, with a wedding ring in my hand. Very soon this place would be filled with guests and the regular marriage pandemonium.
I was the Maid of Honour, and my best friend was getting married today in the same Church.
She found everything she ever wanted and I was not even close. I wasn’t sure which emotion contributed to my tears more, joy or sorrow. The breakup of my parents, the monotony in my job, the loneliness and depression in my life left me hopeless and devastated. How could I fake my happiness? God answered all her prayers then why were mine discarded so brutally?
I remember when I had shoe bites, we exchanged our shoes and she gladly walked in mine for some time, so I could be relieved. She was happy to take the shoe bites I deserved and look what I did. It was her best day and I couldn’t feel happy for her. How selfish could I be?
As memories flooded my head, I didn’t realize when they led me to a slow realization.
We prayed for each other, I happened to remember, and not for ourselves. If she has found happiness, it should mean, my prayers have been answered and hers discarded.
The girl trapped in my womanly body, laughed at the childish satisfaction of this- My prayers were answered!
Oh my! I was being an ignorant idiot. Why was I so sorrowful about this? Wasn’t her joy the first ray of hope in my drab and disgusting life? The happiness of a loved one is always our subconscious prayer. If someone you love is happy, your prayers have been answered. I just stopped believing in a happy life, but she found it! She showed me that it is out there. All I needed to do was to inspire myself to find it.
And just like that, in a miraculous blink of realization, something I lost had returned to me. So what if my life was gloomy for now? I was going to rejoice and let the success and happiness of a friend be nothing but a source of inspiration.
I’d like to believe it was ‘A Personal God’ who conspired to push my thoughts in this direction.
How else would you explain this miracle that happens to every one of us, right out of the blue?
This underrated miracle, we fondly call Hope!
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