Today I could not resist posting about rainbows and hope. I love rainbows, their beauty lifts my spirits, and the symbolism means so much. At the beginning of the UK nationwide Covid lockdown in March 2020, I put a painting in my porch window of a rainbow. Under it I wrote this wonderful Maya Angelou quote:
“God puts rainbows in the clouds so that each of us – in the dreariest and most dreaded moments – can see a possibility of hope.”
Rainbows are often represented in Western art and culture, as a sign of hope and promise of better times. Rainbows are found in so many memes and quotes.
When it rains, look for rainbows.
When it’s dark, look for stars.
If you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain.
My Christian faith looks back to Noah. The Bible tells us that after the great flood, God set a rainbow in the sky as a sign that He would not flood the whole earth again.
Following a challenging time in my life followed by fulfilled dreams rainbows took on an even greater significance for me. My husband and I were struggling with infertility. Doreen an older lady and grandma figure in our church would always ask me what she could pray for. Through tears, I shared our situation. Doreen wrote me a card. In it, she told me she was going to keep on praying until we had children. She said every time I saw a rainbow I should remember that God is good and faithful. It was just over two years later our twins were born.
As I investigated rainbows for this blog I learned something new. I wonder is it news to you? Rainbows are not ‘bows’ but full circles! The rainbow arcs we see all the time are circles that are partially blocked by the ground and horizon. To see a rainbow in all its circular glory, you have to find a nice high vantage point. Most people who see the full circle of a rainbow are in an aircraft.
The full circle is not rare, it’s just our ability to see the full circle that is rare! This discovery amazed me and made the hope metaphor even more powerful. So often we have to be able to see beyond obstacles to find hope. We need to get a view of our current circumstances. For those of faith, we can look from where God is. We can take a heavenly perspective. When we see the full rainbow circle, we see completeness, a never-ending hope.
When I launched my business Rafiki Art in 2021 ‘Rainbow Hope’ was the first print I made available to buy. My mission for Rafiki Art (as well as hopefully making some money) is to share a message of hope for recovery from mental ill health.
I painted the ‘Rainbow Hope’ illustration in the summer of 2020 when I was having flashbacks, struggling to sleep, and experiencing severe anxiety. With the support of friends, therapy, my little dog Rafi and my faith I was beginning to believe I could get better.
If you like this image you can buy it as a print, a greeting card, or on a lovely soft cushion from my shop.
Subscribe to my Illustrated Musings blog this week and I will send you a 20% discount code for prints and cards in my shop
Today I’m hoping you find a rainbow of hope. I wish for you to be able to see beyond your challenges and your circumstances. I also hope you have someone to take your hand and guide you to a higher vantage point.
If you have any stories to share about how you found a higher perspective please put them in the comments. If you prefer your comments can be anonymous. If you’d like to chat privately please send me an email. And like Doreen I’m always willing to pray for you.
Very uplifting and moving.