Rain returns today, dropping a gray curtain on the colors of spring. The drumbeat of the daily news fans the flames of our fears. Friends and family face challenges to health and well-being.

Sometimes we forget what accompanies the shadows of the world: the rain brings water to nourish the land; love waits patiently for our permission to shine forth; a deeper well of meaning waits only for us to lower our pail.

Words of Fra Giovanni in a letter to a friend written in the 16th century come to mind. May they help each of us today find courage to seize the moment, whatever its shadows, and find the peace that passes conventional understanding.

No heaven can come to us unless our hearts find rest in today. Take heaven!

No peace lies in the future which is not hidden in this present little instant. Take peace!

The gloom of the world is but a shadow. Behind it, yet within our reach is joy. There is radiance and glory in the darkness could we but see – and to see we have only to look. I beseech you to look! …

Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty – beneath its covering – that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven.

Courage, then, to claim it, that is all. But courage you have, and the knowledge that we are all pilgrims together, wending through unknown country, home.

And so, at this time, I greet you. Not quite as the world sends greetings, but with profound esteem and the prayer that for you now and forever, the day breaks, and the shadows flee away.