Where's the Hope?
The late Chuck Colson was famously quoted in a Steven Curtis Chapman song as saying "Where is the hope? The hope that each of us has is not in who governs us, or what laws we pass, or what great things we do as a nation." So, where is the hope to be found?
Consumerism is high this Christmas season despite the financial crisis our nation is experiencing. Are we placing our hope in the government to fix everything, and think we can continue as usual without having to put the brakes on personal spending, without suffering personal consequences? Are we in denial?
Hope is like an investment: what you place your hope in will determine the return you will receive. Have you placed your hope in a safe place?
Hope is a big word. A powerful word. But it is more than a word. Hope itself is powerful. It has the power to direct our lives. For what we place our hope in determines a path we take. But sometimes that path leads to a dead end.
All of us have experienced hope, in little things and big. All of us have also experienced the results of misplaced hope.
On a practical level, we can see how prone we are to 'gamble' with hope by looking at the stock market: We invest in what promises to bring a good return, and sometimes we are 'lucky'. But equally so, we can lose not only our investment, but our shirt! And disappointment, discouragement, even depression follows as the reality of a wrong investment stares us in the face. Hope misplaced, dashed, is also powerful.
We often toss hope like dice, hoping for a win. We do this almost unconsciously in the small things, which can set us up for gambling with hope in the big things, like job security, planning for retirement, or the governing of our nation. Such as so many did, I believe, in the 2008 election -- placing their hope in the candidate who ran on the theme of "Hope", Barack Obama, even though that 'hope' was never clearly defined.
So, let's be real about hope. Whether we're talking about candidates, or financial possibilities, or what we will build our personal lives and families on as truth, placing our hope in an unknown quantity yields no guarantees. Gambling on promises made, or a 'feeling' of a good future, or what "I think" is truth is as risky as investing our hard-earned dollars in an unproven enterprise.
But! There are good places to invest our hope. So tune to the show as we bring you thoughtful dialogue and great guests to address the national, financial and personal challenges we are facing, with what the month of December is really all about -- Real Hope.