Thursday, February 25, 2010

Hope four is more than a wish

Thank you! Because of your efforts this little project of spreading hope has stretched around the world.

Hope is essential to living out each day for millions of people. You have passed on the idea of hope far and wide. Did it change the world for the better? Perhaps. However, the main idea was to do what we could with what we have. Spreading hope doesn't have to be a monumental achievement. Little things are as important as the notable, huge, earth shaking events. It only takes one cell to begin life. It only takes one single thread of hope to change a life for the better. A smile, an encouraging word, a helping hand, an ear to listen, a hug, an unexpected letter or email at just the right time all can bring hope to someone that needs it. Over the past week those good things have been working their way around the Internet and the world. Thousands of people have passed on the principal of hope.

Is it ridiculous to think that this Lenten campaign of hope is all that important? No, I don't think so. I don't know about you but I can remember many times when I felt overwhelmed with a problem. It felt as though there was no where to turn, no way out of it. Alone and despondent. Then, from somewhere, out of the blue, without explanation, someone or something opened my eyes to the hope of the future, a way to overcome whatever it was that was consuming me, my energy, my heart, my life. I learned that with hope comes strength, wisdom, courage, attitude, change.

There is a saying, a prayer often used by groups and individuals that is an excellent description of hope in my opinion. It's called the serenity prayer. If you haven't read it lately you may wish to look it up. I think it goes like this: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Close enough. There is a whole lot of good going on in that prayer........I wish you a good day.........Joe

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sharing hope three/how

"Hi there! I was just happened to be passing by and couldn't help but notice, you don't have any hope! Here, I have some extra hope in my wallet and you are more than welcome to it. Have a nice day!"

Sharing hope isn't quite that easy is it? First of all, anyone that doesn't have any hope left probably isn't about to admit it. Secondly, how do we go about the business of sharing it when the person or persons we intend to share it with probably don't believe they need this ridiculous hope stuff anyway?

Sailors caught in a storm are often saved from disaster by the steady beam of a lighthouse. Lost travelers have found safety by following the stars or walking toward a tall landmark. Those lost in a desert at long last coming upon an oasis is a totally understandable depiction of hope. But in those cases the individuals concerned were well aware of what they needed. In many cases those most in need of true hope couldn't care less. If we shove it at them they will turn away. We'll be turned away like the rude, boisterous street corner preacher pushing a sign into out face reading, "The world ends tomorrow."

Hope is best shared by example. In my opinion we should be the beacon, the star, the landmark, the oasis. Not the street corner preacher. Thank you for all your help. I hope you have a wonderful day.........................Joe
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