And then the spirit brings hope, hope in the strictest Christian sense, hope which is hoping against hope. For an immediate hope exists in every person; it may be more powerfully alive in one person than in another; but in death every hope of this kind dies and turns into hopelessness. Into this night of hopelessness (it is death that we are describing) comes the life-giving spirit and brings hope, the hope of eternity. It is against hope, for there was no longer any hope for that merely natural hope; this hope is therefore a hope contrary to hope.
To me, the essence of keeping the soul nourished is obedience to one's conscience. I don't think that the soul can be nourished unless people have a strong sense of conscience that they have educated and developed and soaked in the universal and timeless principles of integrity and service. This way, the individual's soul becomes part of the universal soul of service, contribution, and making a difference.
Where is the hope? I meet millions who tell me that they feel demoralized by the decay around us. Where is the hope? The hope that each of us have is not in who governs us, or what laws are passed, or what great things that we do as a nation. Our hope is in the power of God working through the hearts of people, and that's where our hope is in this country; that's where our hope is in life.
In the Catholic Church, there are many other things which most justly keep me in her bosom. The consent of peoples and nations keeps me in the Church; so does her authority, inaugurated by miracles, nourished by hope, enlarged by love, established by age. The succession of priests keeps me, beginning from the very seat of the Apostle Peter, to whom the Lord, after His resurrection, gave it in charge to feed His sheep (Jn 21:15-19), down to the present episcopate.
Hope? Hope is not the absence of tragedy, my friend. It is the conviction that tragedy can be endured. Hope is the spark in you that is not subdued in the face of the vast and callous indifference of the universe. Hope is that which is not shattered by hardship. Hope is the urge to fight what is wrong even when you know it will destroy you. Hope is the decision to love and need someone knowing that they will one day die. For me to promise that there are no obstacles would be the cruelest lie I could possibly tell. That lie is not hope. Hope is the will which needs no lies.
I dread the loss of her I've never touched love keeps me a slave in a cage of tears I gnaw my tongue with which to her I can never speak I miss a woman who was never born I kiss a woman across the years that say we shall never meet Everything passes Everything perishes Everything palls my thought walks away with a killing smile leaving discordant anxiety which roars in my soul No hope No hope No hope No hope No hope No hope No hope
In a recent dream, God revealed to me a door leading us into four new hopes that will prepare us to be like those who were healed and strengthened in hope and able to stand when the lightning bolt hit. We deal with these fissures of hopelessness by stepping into these new hopes. The four new hopes that I saw the Lord giving us in this time are: Hope for the Unseen, Hope Against Hope, Carefree Hope, and Childlike Hope.
For what it's worth: it's never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There's no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you're proud of. If you find that you're not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.
We do not ask what hope of gain makes a little bird warble, since we know that it takes delight in singing because it is for that very singing that the bird was made, so there is no need to ask why the human mind undertakes such toil in seeking out these secrets of the heavens. ... And just as other animals, and the human body, are sustained by food and drink, so the very spirit of Man, which is something distinct from Man, is nourished, is increased, and in a sense grows up on this diet of knowledge, and is more like the dead than the living if it is touched by no desire for these things.
We should expect hope's reciprocity as a natural flowering of the life of hope. Helping others and nurturing hope is expressive of hopefulness itself. It is an extension of the hopeful self to reach out to others, promoting the connection of agency and the enrichment of horizons of meaning. Hope's reciprocity grows out of the very social nature of hope; we thus frequently see it live in family relations, in intimacy, in love. And so hope spreads. This spreading should not surprise us; like love, it is freely given, fostered, and nurtured.
Hope is critical to both faith and charity. When disobedience, disappointment, and procrastination erode faith, hope is there to uphold our faith. When frustration and impatience challenge charity, hope braces our resolve and urges us to care for our fellowmen even without expectation of reward. The brighter our hope, the greater our faith. The stronger our hope, the purer our charity.
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