The overwhelming sentiment of my Twitter feed is “Good riddance 2017.” Each verbal shedding of the-year-that-must-not-be-named seemed to begin with a “May we” exhortation and end a few tweets later with an “As for me” resolution: theories for us to improve and particulars of the tweeter’s efforts at change.
I get it. I wasn’t so into 2017 either.
In fact, I have a lot of ideas for ways the average American (average Christian) and our systems should change. And if you ask, I’ll tap into the reservoir of suggestions like a keg in an English pub after a Chelsea win (or loss, if you’re not so into Chelsea). Don’t worry, every round is on the house. Like that happy hour, you may leave with a high but you’ll wake up with a hangover. Idealism has a way of fading fast in a world where children starve, minorities are dehumanized, women assume they’ll be harassed, and the president of the United States can’t control himself from threatening nuclear war. And none of those things took to Twitter to shed the ways of 2017.
So, for our first issue of the year, we are ditching the full-on idealism for more approachable expectations. Some longed for, some lost, some recovered. Don’t get me wrong—we aren’t all sackcloth and ashes. Hope abounds in these digital pages alongside exhortation and resolutions of a sort, just in a more routine way.
You’ll find a kind of quiet, restful hope in the expectations of Annelise Jolley and Aarik Danielsen’s work. When things that never enter our resolutions all the sudden enter our life, Tommy Welty and Werner attest to the hope that never fades in the face of failed expectations. And Sarah Frase chases the trust we resolve to have more of in “Save the Date,” her memoir-esque piece recounting her days thus far as a single Christian woman who would like to strike that first descriptor from that introduction.
Then Seth Weick, the first contributor to achieve the Fathom Mag trinity of article–fiction–poetry, has graced us with three poems that will remind you of the tangibility of faith, a welcome change to a world who expects spiritual things to be esoteric.
This issue reverberates more within the heart’s capacity to remember than to dream. But we think those are connected. And after a few pieces, we think you will too.