“O God, our help in ages past,
Our hope for years to come,
Our shelter from the stormy past,
And our eternal home”
To hope is to adventure. The finger that turns this passing page, the mind that uses this fleeting moment, the person who wants to hope—all represent elements of adventure. All want to be fulfilled.
To hope is to be human; hoping is a part of human nature. But realists speak of hopes neglected or denied. Even worse, we know instances of hopelessness. By definition and in experience, hopelessness is a near equivalent of death.
To hope is not to join the fabled little Pollyanna, whose father had taught her the ‘glad game’. Following the rules, she could convert every negative into a positive. All would then and thus be well. No, we sat, not all and not simply so. We often have to play the ‘sad game’ of life, with it’s different set of rules. The only way to survive it is through hoping.
Those who search for hope, at daybreak before doing or at nightfall before resting, are not completely exposed to forces beyond their control. In a protected corner of every restless soul, there is a sense that her needs an object, a Thou named God, who sometimes will seem remote and elusive but who has been helpful in times past.
Picture such a soul, on the first stage of a pilgrimage of hope, finding rest under the arched roof of divine care: it will be there for years to come.
Scripture Reading: Psalm 46