Words of Hope: The Gift of Friendship

Shann has a beautiful coffee table book that just came out on Amazon in collaboration with his artist friend, Craig Hergert. His friend has fifteen years of panoramic images taken all around the state of Montana, and this book is his second panoramic anthology. In this book, Shann’s poetry is infused throughout. Shann and Craig have collaborated before, but this was their first book project. It’s a beautiful piece of art –visually, intellectually, and emotionally. I am sad Dad will not be sitting next to me as we look through the 400 pages. He loved this kind of time together, looking at each photograph, reading Shann’s words, and having a meaningful conversation. He might ask which photo inspired hope in Christ or which one reminded me of God’s love and tenderness. He might ask which image reminded me of our family or of a lonely, hopeful, generous, or fearful time in life. Dad asked elegant questions and made me feel known and loved through these conversations. I wonder where he found this creative way to engage and see each relationship with wonder and endless possibility? 

Shann asked me why I am a good friend to him. I told him the friendship of my parents modeled it. He asked me how they taught me to be a good friend, and I said not only by watching them build a lifetime friendship but also by valuing me and cherishing my point of view as a dear friend would cherish something said. My Dad listened to me like I was a close friend–drinking in every word. Even as a little child, he did this. Dad listened as Shann listens to the Spirit for words of poetry and, like his friend, listening to the numinous for images that change us.

“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing but let us encourage one another and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” – Hebrews 10:24-25

“Montana Panoramic: Transparent in the Backlight”

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