The following quote struck me as more than appropriate for me, for the city in which I live, and for the multitude of unemployed or under-employed people who are facing an uncertain future:
Where there is no faith in the future, there is no power in the present. (Halford Luccock)
I read the quote in Heartlight, but I have read some like it by both ancient and modern writers. In the King James Version the plowman is told to plow in hope. The human spirit works best when fueled by hope.
Today our world is in a crisis of belief: We don’t believe in ourselves or in others. We cannot trust because we see only the untrustworthy. We are blinded to the good, to the hopeful, to those worthy of trust because we are overwhelmed by the narrow perspective of details piled upon details—all of which seem to foretell only more gloom and doom.
What the world needs right this red-hot minute is a little “future faith.” Future faith begins with appreciation for what we DO have rather than what we DON’T have.
I am making a list and checking it twice: clean water, sunshine, decent weather, friendly neighbors or other people who care, decent food, books to read, health, a good old cat, Fang, the breeze off the lake, a tree for shade, a wooden bench to sit on, children—mine and others, a happy mutt, a few flowers, a bed at night, access to the Internet…this may take awhile…
Looking back on the list, it is obvious that things are not necessarily listed by priorities, but simply as a ditzy old brain came to them. Maybe the best list would be one that began with priorities, but survival and living life is not necessarily the same thing. Most of the things on my list are simply not possible for many people today. Just clean water alone is impossible in many developing nations. Our tap water is drinkable, but in some parts of Mexico, the water is tainted by sewer seepage. Villages have no source of clean water.
In the movie Back to the Future 3, the main character was offered a glass of water that looked like a tadpole hatchery. Predictably, the kid looked at the water as if it had come straight out of a creek. In many parts of the world, that could be considered GOOD water.
How does one have hope if even water to quench one’s thirst is not available? How does one have hope if one has lost the house, the car, the world as one knew it? It is difficult to have hope if one’s roof is gone and the foundation of society seems in upheaval.
Circumstances can turn us upside down and inside out. Despair seems the logical reaction. But what is done is done. All we can do is go forward, but going in forward with courage takes hope beyond reason, beyond mere belief. Courage requires future faith—not blindly walking on, but looking forward with our eyes on something better in life.
Battles were lost, but wars were won. Lives teeter on the brink of despair, but living goes on. All things might be lost, but things are things, not life itself.
Churchill once said that we have nothing to fear but fear itself. Fear casts out hope. So that means that to have hope is to have courage. Hope for the future is faith in what is not yet part of the present. Courage NOW: the future takes hope. Blessings upon those who need to SEE hope to have courage.