• jtbelangela

A Hopeful Melody

There’s a beautiful old church not far from my home that sounds its bells on every hour. I’d bet there are people in the neighborhood who find them bothersome, and some probably don’t even notice the sounds as they go about their day. I have always loved hearing the bells, and they are more than simple chimes. At certain times of the year, the bells play out snippets of Christmas carols or hymns I learned during my childhood in the Bronx. On many weekends, I’ve been in the kitchen cooking with my husband, and a familiar song will ring out starting an impromptu game of Name That Tune between us. (For anyone interested in the running score, the advantage belongs to yours truly.)

Like so many people around the globe, my family’s life is much different than it used to be. A simple carefree memory seems like it happened another lifetime ago. Recently, I was in the kitchen making lunch for my family when the sound of bells slipped into the kitchen through the open window. On that day, however, the effect it had on me was quite different. Despite everything going on in the world at that moment, those bells were still ringing for anyone who took the time to listen to them. Our daily lives have many new and difficult challenges, but in that one moment, I could stop to focus on the things I was grateful for. I had working ears to hear the bells, food to feed my family, I was healthy with a roof over my head and loved ones close by. As the bells chimed on and the melody wrapped itself around me, it was almost like a whisper in my ear reminding me to not give up hope that we would get through this. I was in great need of the reminder the bells brought into my kitchen. They finished their tune and went silent again, but the message they left behind was loud and clear.

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