"I Am. . ."
The Seven Windows of Good Hope Lutheran Church

     "I Am The Door"

                                                                                                                                               door.JPG (82340 bytes)                                       

John 10:7 - Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.

(Left) Sin closed doors, shuts gates and breaks relationships.  such was the case from the very beginning as Adam and Eve in their rebellion are driven from the Garden, having succumbed to Satan's temptationNow a flaming sword guards the gate to the Garden (foliage).  Sin separated man from his Creator.  Still, God reveals His grace (red drops) by providing a covering for the man and the woman along with the promise that one day the seed of the  woman (Jesus) would bruise the head of the serpent (Satan).

 

(Center) Only God can open the door that sin has shut.  Through the cross God has brought us back into fellowship with Himself.  Jesus Christ is the DOOR to the Father's heart.

(Right) The keys symbolize the freeing power of forgiveness.  Only Jesus Christ and His powerful word of forgiveness can set us free from the death grip of sin and selfishness. Through Him a new way is opened for us all.  Also implied here is the "Office of the Keys", the authority Christ has given to his church to announce His forgiveness to the troubled believer.

"I Am The Light of the World"

light.JPG (75941 bytes)John 8:12 - Again Jesus spoke to them saying: "I am the light of the world; he who follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

(Center) Into a world darkened by sin and ignorance of the ways of God, Jesus Christ, the Living Light, has come.  Two Bible passages come to mind: (1) John 1:4-5 - "In Him was life, and the life was the light (candle) of men.  The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it."  And (2) Psalm 199:105 - "Thy word (open Bible) is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path."  The praying hands symbolize our turning to Christ and seeking His will.

(Left) The blindfolded bird in the cage depicts the blindness to the will of God of this and every generation.  But the light of Jesus Christ throws open that cape and spiritual sight is restored with a new understanding of God's action on our behalf.

(Right) The broken crutches and chain represent the power of God over physical sickness and disease.  1 Peter 2:24 reminds us that "by His wounds we have been healed."   Jesus Christ, the Light of the World, brings healing to both body and soul.


"I Am The Good Shepherd"

shepherd.JPG (84296 bytes)John 10:11 - I am the good shepherd.  The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.

(Center) This window beautifully combines Old and New Testament images of the Lord as our Good Shepherd.  It pictures Jesus as the loving shepherd who carries us, His sheep, close to His heart.  With staff, sword, and shield He defends His "flock" against all enemies of body and soul.  The white drops depict the Shepherd's love as He lays down His life for the sheep.

(Left) The side panels reflect the message of peace in the 23rd Psalm.  The God of peace, symbolized by the dove, leads His people into green pastures (leaves and stem) and by the waters of rest (the ribbon-like stream connecting all three panels).

(Right) The flaming heart of God (near top) overflows with love and compassion to fill our lives. (pitcher and cup) ". . . My cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life. . . " (Psalm 23:5-6).

"I Am The True Vine"

vine.JPG (83830 bytes)John 15:1 - I am the true vine and my Father is the vine-dresser.

As the True Vine, Jesus was the true and faithful Israel, fulfilling the call which old Israel rejected.  The new Israel, the Church, can only bear fruit as it abides in union with Jesus Christ through prayer (John 15:7) and loving obedience (John 15:9-10).  To abide in Him means that we love one another as He has loved us (John 15:12). 

(Center) Our union with Christ is strengthened by our participation in the Lord's Supper.   "This cup is the New Covenant in my blood shed for you and for many for the forgiveness of sins."  Here is symbolized the powerful word of forgiveness as we abide in Him.

(Left) This panel depicts numerous Old Testament references to Christ as the righteous Branch, the "stump of Jesse.""  In Jesus Christ, God was keeping His promise to David (harp and crown) that through his descendants would come one who would deal wisely and rule with justice and righteousness. 

(Right) The ancient Christian symbols of the Alpha and Omega remind us that Christ is the beginning and end of all things.  The Omega is superimposed on the Chi Rho, the symbol for Christ, the first two letters of the Greek word for "Christ".   We then are called to abide in Christ, who, from beginning to end, brackets our lives with His love and forgiveness. 

"I Am The Bread of Life"

bread.JPG (66656 bytes)John 6:35 - Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life, he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst."

(Center) As the Lord provided His people with life-giving manna in the wilderness, so He sustains His people today with the Bread of Life, His own body which we share at the Lord's Table.  His Word is also bread to us.  "Man does not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God" (Matt.4:4).  The white drops again suggest the love of God as He graciously provides for all our needs, physical and spiritual.

(Left) Here is depicted the miracle of Jesus as He feeds the multitude with five loaves and two fish.  This miracle is reminiscent of the miracle of manna and quail as God provided for His people wandering in the wilderness after the Exodus.  He continues still today to sustain and care for His people. 

(Right) This panel portrays the parable of the sower as the seed is sown (stalks of wheat) in our hearts.  This panel asks us the question - "Will the seed of God's Word find receptive soil in our hearts and sprout and bear fruit for Him?"

"I Am The Way, The Truth, and The Life"

way.JPG (75480 bytes)John 14:6 - Jesus said to them, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father, but by me."

(Center) The quill, scroll and the candle are traditionally symbols of learning the truth.   The Bible teaches that the truth sought for by wise men and scholars throughout the ages is embodied in Jesus Christ.  He is the Truth and reveals the ways of God to men. "Jesus then said. . . , 'If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free" (John 8:31-32).

(Left)   This panel depicts the final judgment in the trumpets that will herald His coming again, and the scales of justice as He will rightly divide the sheep from the goats.   It is a reminder to us that we must be watchful and ready for His return.

(Right) We are reminded of our union with Christ in Holy Baptism expressed in the shell and water droplets.  We are baptized into Christ's death and resurrection to a new life of daily service to Him.  The fish is an ancient symbol for Jesus.  The letters in the Greek word for "fish" form an acrostic: Jesus Christ, Son of God, Savior.

"I Am The Resurrection and The Life"

resurrection.JPG (86514 bytes)John 11:25-26 - Jesus said to her (Martha), "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and whoever lives and believes in me shall never die."

(Left) This window depicts the central event of the Christian faith, the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.  His death and burial are expressed in the red drops of blood and the empty cross as His body is taken down and placed in the tomb.

(Center) His resurrection is symbolized by the butterfly rising from the open tomb toward the light of the morning sun, God's new day.

(Right) Through faith we share in His resurrection victory and are reborn into the Kingdom of God, symbolized by the green leaves sprouting from the scepter.  The crown symbolizes the Crown of Life that will be ours as we will reign with Him one day in heaven.   Revelation 2:10 - "Be faithful unto death and I will give you the crown of life."  The resurrection of Jesus Christ has opened the way to eternal life for us all. 

"And Jesus said to the, I AM. . ." and in those words he becomes the One for us.  Seven times in the Gospel of John Jesus declares, "I AM" and hope rises in the human heart.

The seven window of Good Hope were designed and fabricated by Dietrich Spahn Associates, Inc. Wayzata, Minnesota.   The glass used in the windows is full antique, hand-blown glass, imported from Germany.

The windows were installed on December 2, 1981 and dedicated to the glory of God on December 20, 1981.

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