One of my daughters teaches English as a second language to adults at a community college. She said the subtle difference between the words “hope” and “wish” are difficult to convey to her students in denotation and connotation.
I could turn back the clock
I looked like him/her
I was successful like him/her
I had a new car
it would stop raining
I had a better job
I had enough money to retire
the world will be a good place for my grand daughter
my car will last a few more years
I can budget my money wisely and save a little each month
I can make a difference in my community
I remain healthy as I care for my body
I can take a trip to ________ soon
I can pass along good spiritual values to my family
We can spend a lot of time passively wishing for things that are unlikely or impossible to happen. Some people expect God to act like a genie in a bottle who grants their wishes miraculously on demand. On the other hand, we can work toward fulfilling our hopes and dreams for things that realistically could happen. The human spirit needs hope and we are inspired by stories of people who persevered through difficulty to achieve their goals.
Negative attitudes destroy hope. As I get older I need to encourage younger generations and act in ways that show that I believe in their future. Am I doing my best to care for the earth, to be relevant with my beliefs rather than looking back to “the good old days”? Some have lost hope due to abuse, loss, poverty, social pressure, depression or other illnesses. How can I make a difference in my community to help those in need?
Advent is a season of waiting and hope. Proverbs 13:12 says,
“Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life”
Let us work to help make someone’s longing a reality.