Dear Why Team member,
An old saying tells us that Hope should be the last thing to die. So without hope are we hopeless?
We have heard that “Hope Springs Eternal,” maybe it is also appropriate to say that “Hope Springs Internal.” - Why?
Family therapist Virginia Satir once said, "Most people prefer the certainty of misery over the misery of uncertainty." Put another way, we often choose the devil we know over the one we don't know, why? Because with the devil we know, we know what to expect.
So do you have hope for a brighter future or do you fear the future?
Are you upset that a season of your life has come to an end wanting more of the past than the unknown future?
It can be particularly hard for us humans to deal with change. Change reminds us of death, the core human fear, something often has to come to an end, to die, for something new to be born. Denial of endings inhibits new beginnings and without hope that those new beginnings can be brighter, we can run from the very gifts we have been given to achieve some feeling of control. We can reject the new for the old. We can look back more than look forward, reflect more than project and live in circumstance more than in vision, choose to stay rather than go. However, having hope for a future brighter and better than you can imagine today, can propel us from our beds to see what life has to offer us. It is human to fear the unknown future, however, feeling the misery of uncertainty, can keep us in bed, with the covers over our head. The one empowering difference? Hope!
Consider those who tragically found themselves in a Nazi concentration camp. What was the primary difference between those who survived and those who did not? Holocaust survivor Victor Frankl speaks of this in his book, "Man's Search for Meaning." The Amazon description of his book reads, "He noticed that it was the men who comforted others and who gave away their last piece of bread who survived the longest - and who offered proof that everything can be taken away from us except the ability to choose our attitude in any given set of circumstances. The sort of person the concentration camp prisoner became was the result of an inner decision and not of camp influences alone. Frankl came to believe man's deepest desire is to search for meaning and purpose. This outstanding work offers us all a way to transcend suffering and find significance in the art of living."
Where do meaning and purpose come from? One can’t be confident he/she has them unless there’s hope of living them. So, maybe it is best said that hope springs internal; that hope springs from decisions found in the meaning and opportunity to serve another, no matter one's own personal circumstance. To serve another gives hope to both the other and to the server.
How might you serve another today?
I have been the very fortunate recipient of love when I needed it most, and it has given me hope for the future. My mother, in her final days on earth, gave me the gift of hope for the future. I also allowed others to enter my life and comfort and love me during my darkest days. I will be forever grateful to them. Maybe nothing reminds us more that we have hope, than when we give hope to another. Isn’t it true that what goes around comes around? Spread the good and the hope today and when you need it, it’ll come back around.
Be grateful for the happiness you have known, and then if necessary, let it go, knowing that there is a happiness you don't know, that is coming your way. Hope springs internal and eternal. Be excited and ignited by this truth that each new day brings possibilities above and beyond what you can imagine.
Make it a great week,