Hope…what does hope mean. The dictionary says, “the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best.” I think that hope is so much more. Hope is knowing that Christ lives and loves and knows me and even in my darkest hour I am not alone. Hope is knowing that even at times when we have given up that He will never give up. Hope is knowing that when I cannot help my child, when I know that I have nothing left that I can offer him that will soften his heart, that God does. Hope is knowing that when I don’t know what my child needs He knows exactly what he needs. And hope is knowing that even when my son is away, doing whatever he does, with his heart angry and unforgiving, that God will send him what he needs even if it is hardship.
Hope is having joy and being able to smile even when you need to cry and not feeling guilt for being happy even when you are sad too. Hope is peace and love and quiet whisperings of the spirit. Hope is prayer and knowing God hears and loves me. Hope is perhaps one of the greatest gifts in this life and ever so much more than the dictionary answer of the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best, because even when I may know that what I want can’t be had or I fear that events won’t turn out for the best, I still shine with hope and I still smile with joy.
I wish there was a way you could give every feeling and emotion that burns within your heart to your child. I know that if I could, if they all could feel what I feel for them and for their father their hearts would be softened, and if they could feel my love for my Savior they would believe no matter what. But that is not how it works and they have to gain their testimony for themselves just like I did.
Today I started reading about Alma the older in the scriptures, someone who began as a priest for King Noah, doing wickedly and perverting the ways of the Lord. I think perhaps there were many, if not all, who thought that he would never grasp hold to the truth of the gospel, that his heart would never be softened. Abinadi taught even until death and something in what he spoke softened Alma’s heart. Alma’s own son growing up under a prophet went on to destroy God’s church but the angel softened his heart in answer to so many’s prayers. That is hope. When others gave up and others had tried so hard without success, something or someone came along to soften them, to open their hearts to their Savior.
My Father and Step Mother are on their mission in the Philippines, and unless you have served there you cannot know the hardships that the Philippine people go through or how hard of a mission that it is. I know that I don’t even know even with a brother who served, a father who is serving, and most of all a husband who served there, but I have learned some and wondered how people can live such a sad life in such severe poverty and still find joy. Now their land has been devastated and so many thousands dead I wonder will they ever be able to find hope again? How do you lose your whole family and still find the strength to go on?
Hope. Hope in Christ. I know of no other way.
I guess in our struggles in life we think we really have it hard, and maybe even we do, but I cannot in anyway imagine the pain that they are suffering now. I want to cry for my own sorrows and fears, but how can I when I so many are suffering over there?
I guess that is the greatest aspect of hope. Hope tells me that when Christ is worrying and working for so many others who need him so much more he still has the ability to worry and work for me and for my son as he struggles to find himself. Hope is the knowledge of this love, that Christ can love and care for all of his children all of the time.
Now how do you teach that to someone else, how to you give the great gift of this knowledge to them? You can’t. You can lead and teach and love and set the best example that you can and then you can only leave it on Him, the great Redeemer of the world. Moses 1:39-For behold, this is my work and my glory-to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.
The Savior’s very purpose in this life is my Hope, because I know that even to the very last minutes, even seconds of my life he will be working for me and never giving up on me.That is my hope.