Sally Welch says, ‘Hope is not always easy – it challenges us, bidding us to move out of our comfortable zone of despair, that grey sludge which covers the brightest thing with its mess of apathy and inertia.’ She goes on to say, ‘Hope encourages us to look beyond our current circumstances, to imagine a better, brighter future, and then to work towards making that vision a reality. Hope reminds us that God isn’t finished with us yet.’ (‘Sharing The Easter Story,’ P 77)
Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians in Eph 1:15-19 included the request that they would know ‘the hope to which God has called you.’ God’s Spirit is able to reveal the works of God to us, enlightening the eyes of our heart so that we can see our future as children of God. In a world that has been darkened by suffering or grief, loss or pain, we need this spiritual light to give us the resolve to carry on. Thomas Aquinas wrote that while ‘faith has to do with things that are not seen’, hope has to do with ‘things that are not yet at hand.’ By faith we hold on to those things, just as Abraham held on to God’s promise, and thus faith and hope are linked in making the invisible visible and what has not yet happened a present reality!