Hope shines brightest…

Less than a kilometer after you enter Irpin, you are confronted with the stark reality of war as you are greeted by a heap of cars that have been bombed and burned out in the war of Russian aggression. The vehicles were relocated from various locations throughout the city… often from the side of the roads. I’m told these were not cars people died in, though one cannot help but wonder.

This empty lot was previously where people came to practice their driving skills. Now it is home to a wide assortment of vehicles that did not survive the war.

After visiting the city for about a week, I noticed some changes. So I crossed the street on foot and took a closer look. It appears that sunflowers had begun to spring up in the midst of these vehicular ruins.

helen_yanko_art #flowersforhope

About eight years ago, Paul McCartney recorded a song for a video game. The song was called Hope for the Future and in it he sings, “Hope shines brightest in the dark.” So it is in Irpin, artists have begun painting sunflowers in the darkest places of destruction… places that have been hit hard by the war. Against the backdrop of the dark, hard core depravity of man’s heart where hope shines brightest, Ukrainian artists use their brushes to remind their compatriots of who they are and what they are about… a nation of people who feed the world, care for each other, and hope for freedom. Yes… Ukrainians…

… but not only Ukrainians.

Bonus Pictures: Beautifying the House of Culture

The House of Culture was heavily bombed. It will be coming down at some point,
but until they do that, these images will lift people’s spirits.
A wonderful Ukrainian artist donates her time to this temporary wall with a scene
that could have easily come out of a Ukrainian fairy tale book.
Even the Uber driver wanted to be involved in this project and donated his time to paint the background color.

4 thoughts on “Hope shines brightest…

  1. Thanks for sharing, Eric. What resiliency the Ukrainians are showing the world. Continuing to pray for victory and peace.


  2. Eric, Thank you for this profound post. The cars with the sunflowers is so poignant it is hard to look at. The walls with the new paintings do indeed reveal a strong, creative culture filled with noble people.

    I have not yet been able financially to have a small part in helping to start you on your 2nd check for your beautiful music, but this next payday, ( tomorrow) I’m looking forward to purchasing your music and will share it with whomever I can!!! Recently, I did send a gift to you and Beth, and some for Ukraine, but mostly my heart and prayers are going out to you and my fellow brothers & sisters. Please advise if you are near the nuclear plower plant? Could it go up in flames?


    1. Hi Deborah, I did not see how you could fix your typos, so I just did it quickly for you. Also, you will notice I removed some of the specificity of the financial information you shared. Thank you for your financial and prayer support.

      Regarding the nuclear power situation, please know I am not near the nuclear power plant, but we are continuing to pray for God’s protection over Ukraine. Hopefully Ukraine won’t have to endure another nuclear disaster caused by Russia.


  3. Dear Eric and Beth,

    How are you both? How are Bethany, her husband and your grandchild? How old is your grandchild, now?

    Just in the last few days:
    A.) am hearing that a troop of Russian soldiers was ‘routed’ by Ukrainian forces;

    B.) heard news of 2 leaks on the Nord Stream pipeline. How will this effect the Ukrainian people?

    C.) have NOT hearing much of the war from either liberal or conservative sites.

    D.) Some Russian soldiers are resisting conscription.

    I know your free minutes are few—especially right now, so only when you write a next newsletter, I’ll will look forward to hearing updates.

    Praying hard for the people of Ukraine, and Russia as well.


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