I love the smokestacks in the port of Dublin. I've heard they're disused, unneeded, but the general population (or perhaps, the more traditional, sentimental of the population) fight against their potential destruction.
I can see why they would fight it. No matter where you stand around the horseshoe of the bay, beyond Howth on the northside and down near Killiney Hill to the south, you can see these stripey pillars hoisted from the flattened peninsula. Airplanes fly right over them, tall ships sail past them. They mark the territory, anchor the capitol, point our way home.
And yet, whenever I spot them with my eye and try to capture them with my camera, I can't do them justice. They're blurry and distant. They don't anchor anything in the photo, but only poke out like toothpicks. They're nearly always hidden by clouds, cloaked in shadow. And I wonder how icons so bright and proud can dim so quickly behind a millimeter of glass.
The above photo was taken by a professional, I assume. Even still, the shadows threaten to overcome.
Things get extremely personal at Velvet Ashes today. I'm not going to write much about it here or tell you what it's all about, and even though I wrote it with expat women in mind, the crux of the issue is something I believe can be true for everyone:
"Whether it’s mental illness, emotional stress, spiritual dryness, loneliness or heartache, you are not disqualified. The Spirit of God is alive and at work in you. Be intentional, make a plan and find a safe place so that on the days or in the months He feels far away, you know what to do and you know the truth to believe in..."
What I want to tell you, any of you, all of you, YOU who find yourself in the driest, flattest, darkest of places: God sees you. He does not forget. And He does not ignore. The heartache is only a shadow. I know, I know Jesus to be the truest of all realities.