At the Top of the List–Hopefulness

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope or confidence. ~ Helen Keller

As I sat with pen in hand, making my annual list of hopes and dreams, I had the very hopeful idea that the coming year of 2010 would prove to be one of the best of my life. That whisper had no sooner crossed my mind, than the voice of Doom followed, “Don’t be silly. Why would you think that?”

I was born a rather melancholy soul, a prime trait for a novelist (a glance at the Oprah picks attests to this), but one that leans strongly and easily toward pessimism in everyday living. For each hopeful idea that flutters across my mind, ten more come instantly after it to tell me why it will not work and, furthermore, how everything is going to hell in a handbasket.

If my husband does not call at an accustomed time, I rarely think the logical, that maybe he is busy—I have him dead along the highway. If the furnace makes a funny noise even once, I am certain it is not only going to break down but need total replacing. Just as soon as we bought the house of our dreams, I began to suspect a myriad of dire, unnamed problems that would result in a) financial ruin, and b) possibly the house falling down within weeks.

As odd as it may sound, however, it is precisely this darkly pessimistic attitude that has contributed to growing my appreciation of hope. Each time I fall into the cold misery of dark pessimism, it is hope that rescues me and warms and cheers me to get going again. As Karen Casey writes in her book, Cultivating Hope: “…one moment at a time, we can make the commitment to release the negative and nurture hope instead.”

Hope is a choice, one I can and actually do make each day I decide to get out of bed in the morning. Without hope, I dare not, but with it, I dare anything.

Faith goes up the stairs that love has built and looks out the window which hope has opened.–Charles Spurgeon.

So this year, the trait of Hopefulness goes at the top of my annual list of hopes and dreams. I will pray for Hopefulness, cultivate it, and deliberately practice it to help make the other dreams on the list come true.



8 thoughts on “At the Top of the List–Hopefulness

  1. Pingback: 2010 Doable Resolve #1 « Mother Nature’s Garden

  2. Losing my worries would be like losing my right arm (well, left…I am left handed). I have come to live with them that way. But I can also be a hopeful fool, thinking things will turn out right when they can’t possibly. Can the two go hand in hand? I identified with so much that you wrote.

    Do you recommend Karen Casey’s book?? I like the quotation and lately have been buying my books on the word of my friends. They are just too expensive. Recently started Chin Up Honey. How I love that Emma Cole. She has those little buzzings going on in her head that I do! And the journals. Nothing like a pretty journal to motivate one to write. Do you have the website?

    Best wishes for a gentle and hopeful start in the new year!



  3. Just wanted to stop in and see what is new with you. I have read all of your books I can find, the last one was Chin Up and just wondered if you had a new one in the works. Have enjoyed each book so much and appreciate your good thoughts and Bible verses. Sincerely, Marilyn Morse


Thoughts? Don't keep them to yourself. Love to hear!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.