Helping leaders emerge


Searching for Hope and Gratitude in the Darkest of Places

Recently I read a book that has put a whole new perspective on what it means to have gratitude and keep hope alive. I often find myself thinking about Amanda – what she endured and how she learned to forgive.

While difficult to read, A House in the Sky is a memoire describing Amanda Lindhout’s fifteen months in Somalia where she was held hostage and tortured by a group of Islamic fundamentalists. She was beaten, starved, chained up, kept in the dark, and repeatedly raped – and yet Amanda Lindhout inspires us with her resilience and her ability to survive and find hope in the most challenging of situations.

A little girl chatting to herself while she plays, a left-behind passport photo of a young boy, a Christmas gift made from bottle caps, q-tips and dental floss, sunlight peaking through a window….Amanda Lindhout savors these moments while she expresses gratitude for the simplest of pleasures and continues to search for hope in a living hell.

During her darkest times, Amanda visualizes a beautiful home, A House in the Sky, where she fills it with the people she loves, the memories she treasures and the future she dreams of.

As I mentioned, it’s not an easy book to read, but it might just change you, as it has me, with renewed hope and gratitude for the simplest of life’s pleasures that we so often take for granted.