November 2, 2008
The subject of "hope" has been coming into my awareness recently--in Internet group posts and various other places. Then yesterday I received a voice mail message from one who said she was losing hope again and was going to have to work on pulling herself from despair (words to that effect).
When thinking about that call, I remembered the cosmic man who inspired my name change in 1991. We were sitting in the park by an inner city lake one evening when he initiated a topic of conversation into our quiet togetherness with the words, "You know, I have no hope." He was not a stereotypical despondent-type person, and he wasn't despondent when he made the statement. I thought about it momentarily and speculated that maybe he had no hope because that would take him out of the present and into the future and shared my thought with him. He seemed to resonate with that idea.
Being in the now moment, being here now (out of the past and out of the future), finding joy where one can find it, being grateful despite adversities, accepting that all is in Divine order, not reacting to outer circumstances with anger and frustration--all are methods that keep one above the level of despair. Some would say despair is the opposite of hope, but we would like to suggest that neither is "bad" or "good."
We would like to close with the well-known "Serenity Prayer," gifted to us all by Reinhold Niebuhr:
Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next. Amen.