Thursday, April 16, 2009
Entry #9: Oxygen for the Soul
From the incredible mind & heart of Erwin McManus in his book, Soul Cravings: When there is no future, there is no hope. Where there is no hope, there is no reason to live. There is only despair. Our souls are not designed for despair. It's not where we are intended to live. If we live there too long, we will find ourselves soul-sick. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream and was killed for it. When we have no dream, it kills us. It's the same way with hope. Hope pulls us into the future. When you consider that the future is overwhelmingly uncertain, you can see why hope would have such immense value. Yet as essential as hope is for life, we live in a world that seems determined to take it from us. Hope is rare, but we don't need much of it to experience its power. When we are full of hope, it's not because everything in the future is certain to us, but because the future is filled with promise. At the same time, like the promise of a future, hope only comes from something we do not yet have, something we have not yet attained. In other words, how much you have in the world has no bearing on how much hope you have. In actuality, everything you have no longer qualifies as a conduit of hope. Once you have it, it's out of the arena of hope. Anything you have already received or experienced no longer qualifies as a source of hope.Hope pulls you into the future because it comes from there. If you no longer believed in the future, you would lose all hope. And what's strange about this is that while hope is connected to the future, it's impossible to thrive in the present without it. There's a simple reason for this. It's exactly how God has designed you. We tend to take for granted the things that are most obvious to us. It's sort of like we worry about paying the bills but never worry about having air to breathe. But really which one is more critical to life?