The local paper’s front page story today is a feature on Advent and the themes of Peace, Joy, Hope, and Love.
I was interviewed on the subject of hope, and here are few more thoughts on the subject.
Hope springs from knowing you’re not alone, from receiving help given by those who have been through difficulty, and from sharing what has helped you with other people.
The Episcopal Church’s “Daily Office” – our Morning and Evening Prayer – nourishes hope by joining people into a prayer tradition shared by Christians around the world and by the communion of saints through the centuries. I write this blog to help people practice this particular form of daily prayer.
I participate in recovery groups, where people help those who are in trouble by sharing what has worked for their own healing. In many cases, recovery involves working with a sponsor, whose personal concern builds hope and reassures us that we are not alone.
Through organizations like NAMI Fox Valley and the Littlest Tumor Foundation, which my wife and I support, people learn they are not alone in their fears — whether about mental illness or about tumors in children — and they receive comfort from other families who face the same struggles.
The people of St. Thomas Church in Menasha, WI — where I serve as deacon — generously share their faith in Jesus, their hope in the resurrection, and their experience of healing with newcomers and people in the wider community, and they invite people to join them in reaching out in care and concern through ministries like the Double Portion meal.
I think hope is something you do, perhaps even more than something you have. Participating in Christ’s risen life — through prayer, study, fellowship, and service — builds and strengthens and nourishes hope in us, and we in our turn build up, strengthen, and encourage one another to live in hope.
NAMI Fox Valley
Littlest Tumor Foundation
St. Thomas Church