I have always been intrigued by stain glass. Notably, the story each pane of glass told. I am sure the men and women who carefully place each piece of glass in its proper place are touched by each window they complete. Especially those that work on stained- glass for church windows. The windows that welcome each man, woman, and child into a place of love and acceptance. This is where my story begins. A story that changes each week, from the time I walk through the front door.
My story began nineteen years ago when I was looking to move into the quaint, small, charming town of Nazareth. After visiting a few churches, I walked through the doors of St. John’s UCC. As I walked down the center aisle, looking for a pew, I was taken back by the sun streaming through the large stained-glass window behind me. The colorful, vibrant colors washing over the walls made me feel like I was part of a beautiful rainbow. However, that was just the beginning. As I smiled at those who welcomed me and shook hands, something beautiful caught my eye. It was the stained-glass window behind the altar, above the golden cross and just beneath the tall white ceiling.
Each piece of stained glass was arranged to depict Jesus teaching the Beatitudes. His image was so beautifully created and touched my heart. I found myself staring into his eyes, those loving eyes. The mesmerizing faces of the listeners hanging on to each word of his lesson were captured so perfectly. I found myself looking up as if to heaven throughout the service.
Then one Sunday, sitting in my pew with my eyes on Jesus, and sensing the sun streaming through the beautiful stained-glass window near the backside of the church, I felt a peaceful feeling that started in my heart and radiated to every inch of my being. It was a calmness I’ve never felt before. I felt safe and loved as if the whole church was filled with angels.
That beautiful scene still touches my heart each Sunday as I lift my heart in prayer, listen to the message, and enjoy the soul touching music. It has brought me peace when loved ones passed and reassured me that he waits for each one of us with open arms. Each week, as my walk with him, gets stronger, that window keeps reminding me that I am his and he is mine.
When I think back to the folks who created the window, I wonder what they felt as they put each piece together. When it was finished, did the image that touched my heart, touch their hearts? Did it make a difference in their lives? Did it fill them with peace? Most importantly, did they feel loved?
The next time you see a beautiful stained-glass window, take a good look at it. Look at the beauty of each piece and let it speak to your heart. If just might make a difference.