When believers collaborate in removing fears, or making a life-affirming future more genuinely possible, they agree to view that future as unfolding in the hands of God. This means that their own daily lives become more consciously attuned to what God’s love is disclosing for them. They appreciate a spiritual dimension to their relationships which treats even the unknown future still being shaped by God as attractive. It can only become attractive, however, if we agree that a profound mystery is what attracts and guides us. The mystery may be God, or may be Christ, or may be the ways of the Spirit dimly glimpsed through passages of Scripture.
Marc Chagall’s stained glass for the Stephans Dom in Mainz, a major cathedral, was a collection of some of the most profoundly religious images of his life. He uses both images of human beings and symbolic shapes and colours, to indicate a dimension of invisible energies that brings vitality to those who struggle and suffer most. We cannot picture God, but we can be open to God’s readiness to bend down to touch and guide our human experience. Chagall uses both Christian and Jewish themes. For both faiths, hope is directed, like faith, towards an invisible and profound reality of compassion.
This makes life’s journey a venture into surprising and delightful newness, as well as dangers and unforeseen tensions. We must hold our hearts open to the consoling and revelatory moments of divine light which take our motives into a higher realm.