Growing in Hope
“Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.” –Hebrews 10:23
Nobody can live without hope. The theological virtue of hope gives life to our soul. It is our response to God’s promises, which He always fulfills.
What is hope?
“Hope is the theological virtue by which we desire the kingdom of heaven and eternal life as our happiness, placing our trust in Christ’s promises and relying not on our own strength, but on the help of the grace of the Holy Spirit.” –CCC 1817
Living with hope
Dr. Peter Kreeft says this about hope: “Hope is like headlights. It is not easy to drive without headlights in the dark.”
A life without hope is a life of great despair. Hope leads the way to true joy and peace in our lives. Hope gives us meaning in life and the strength to push forward in the midst of adversity, since hope is always directing us to our ultimately heavenly goal. Hope answers the burning desire of our hearts for total happiness.
3 ideas to help you grow in hope
- Reflect on Matthew 7:7-8. Jesus tells us, “Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.” Pray for an increase in hope in God’s promises by reciting passages like this daily. The “Our Father” also anchors our hope in God.
- Give thanks. Give thanks to God for the things for which you have hoped for in the past that He has since blessed you with. Give thanks to Him for friendship that allows you to hope along with your fellow Christians. Giving thanks increases hope.
- Learn about heaven—our greatest hope and longing. Learning about the ultimate destiny we are all aiming for helps increase our hope. Read Dr. Peter Kreeft’s beautiful book, Heaven: The Heart’s Deepest Longing.
What do the experts say?
“Place all your hope in the Heart of Jesus; it is a safe asylum; for he who trusts in God is sheltered and protected by His mercy. To this firm hope, join the practice of virtue, and even in this life you will begin to taste the ineffable joys of Paradise.” –St. Bernard of Clairvaux
“We must have confidence in God, Who is what He always has been, and we must not be disheartened because things turn out contrary to us.” –St. Philip
“Real hope is not crushed by disappointment. In fact, it is in difficulty that hope often is born.” –Donald DeMarco