August 21

Reflection

To look at our present world with its many people steeped in situations of poverty, oppression, sickness and fear is to see reasons for despair. Yet, the prophetic call is the call to bring hope to the people, to challenge them to believe in God’s abiding presence even in the most dire situations. To help others to believe that if they take action, God is with them. When we hear the ringing tones of Martin Luther King JR’s “ I Have Dream” speech, when we look at the life and words of Ghandi, the work of Mother Teresa, the words of Oscar Romero , we see a few of the modern prophets who sowed hope and held up a vision of future possibilities. Hope is based in a profound conviction of God’s love, the belief that God can “wipe away the tears from our eyes…and the former things will pass away”. Hope believes that there is an alternative to the present situation and works toward creating it even if personally it will never be experienced.

Prayer

Lord, where there is despair let me sow hope.

Action

I will examine my own life to assess my areas of hope and discouragement. Where can I make a change?  How can I sow hope in the circle of my work and relationships? Who are the people sowing hope in the public arena? How can I join with them?

Suggested Reading

Lord make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred let me sow love.
Where there is injury…pardon.
Where there is despair…hope…
Francis of Assisi

The divine guidance often comes .when the horizon is blackest.
Gandhi

You may not always have a comfortable life and you will not always be able to solve all of the world’s problems at once but don’t ever underestimate the importance you can have because history has shown us that courage can be contagious and hope can take on a life of its own.
Michelle Obama

Let your hopes, not your hurts, shape your future.
Robert H. Schuller

We have always held to the hope, the belief, the conviction that there is a better life, a better world, beyond the horizon.
Franklin D. Roosevelt

The theological virtue of hope is the patient and trustful willingness to live without closure, without resolution, and still be content and even happy because our Satisfaction is now at another level, and our Source is beyond ourselves.
Richard Rohr

Hope is definitely not the same thing as optimism. It is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out.
Vaclav Havel

 

Tags: