Hope, where are you?
This enquiry is going out not to the person or persons bearing that name but rather to the state of affairs as we understand it to be. Having researched your credentials, it is my understanding that you are loaded with sugar and spice and everything nice which included prospect, optimism, expectation, expectancy, anticipation, aspiration, faith and trust.
That’s why we miss you. Are you alive and well? I can’t hear your whisper (as in the hymn Whispering Hope). Could you please turn up the decibel level for us to hear you clearly? Higher please, we still can’t hear you, Hope.
Somehow extraneous sounds from sources like despair, despondency, fear, pessimism and gloom are drowning you out with tremendous success. Our people who for the most part are deeply religious recall from their mental archives this particular verse: “Is there no Balm in Gilead; is there no physicians there?? When then is not the health of the daughters of my people recovered? (Gen. 8.22)
So many are going through tough and difficult times, we are all hurting; what’s more some are sick and some are sad. Many of us are at our wits end but the empty promises accompanied by a lot of spinning seems to be doing very little to ease the pain and bring much needed relief.
An anonymous person heightened our fears when he/she penned those words: “Man can live about 40 days without food; about 3 days without water; about 8 minutes without air; but only about one (1) second without Hope.”
You therefore understand the gravity of the situation I’m sure Hope. I’m afraid that if you don’t hurry back and make your presence felt with more disposable income for our poverty stricken, those who have lost their jobs and can’t make ends meet. Put a halt to businesses on the verge of collapse and bring some sort of panacea to our socio-economic problems; please Hope.
We understand that there is no medicine like hope, no incentive so great, no tonic so powerful as expectation of something tomorrow. How the populace wish that this message be translated into concrete, tangible benefits in a hurry to our young unemployed disenchanted youngsters in particular before Satan wins the mental battle. Avert suicidal and other anti-social tendencies and contemplations. Should we give any credence to the words of Job when he said “But you are forcers of lies, you are physicians of no value.” (Job 13:4)
Indeed hope springs eternal in the human heart in spite of the depressing sights and sounds around us. Permit me to take you back to the stanza of an old fashion hymn “Come ye disconsolate! Where e’er you languid. Come to the mercy-seat, fervently kneel. Here bring your wounded hearts, here tell your anguish. Earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot heal. Dear reader, it works.
In simple physics lab tests will not only make us aware through education what terms like breaking point, elastic limit, coefficient of lenear expansion, modulus of elasticity and the like mean, but help us to advert them. It’s frightening!
The hymn quotes above mentions sorrow so let us look briefly at its ramifications. In a world which has been completely disarranged by sin, the experience of sorrow in one form or another is inevitable. Man is born to sorrow as the sparks fly upward. All history narrates it; all poetry sings of it; all biography confesses it; all experience teems with it. There is not one beating heart in this Federation that does not know it. Sorrow – give us a break please!
It is strange but true, it is not always possible to pack up our troubles in our own canoe and hoe our own rows.
Sorrow is a common denominator such that one poet penned these lines : “laugh and the world laughs with you. Weep and you weep alone. For this old earth must borrow its mirth; it has sorrows of its own.”
The causes of sorrow are as varied as the hearts that endure it. To some, it comes as a consequence of departing from the living God. It reaches others through the wealth which they have spent their strength to acquire. To others it comes through man’s inhumanity to man. To others again through domestic bereavement and trials. It would be remiss of me if I did not tell you that sorrow is not all bad. Yes sorrow is not only common, it could be purposeful and beneficent . Don’t snap under it. Don’t allow Earth’s cares to bring you to the breaking point
Here is a positive note to end on. There is a Balm in Gilead. The verse in Jeremiah chapter 8, verse 22 and its related questions may be understood as laying the blame of the incurable of their diseases upon themselves. The question must be answered affirmatively. Yes, certainly there is. God is able to help and heal all of us as a people and our nation by extension, why worry when we can pray?
In Jeremiah’s day certainly it was not for want of Balm and a physician, but because they would not admit the application, nor submit to the methods of care. The physicians and physic were both ready, but the patients were willful and would not be tied to rules. What about us today?
Ponder this second stanza: “Joy to the desolate; light of the straying. Hope of the penitent, fadeless and pure! Here speaks the comforter, tenderly saying Earth has no sorrow that heaven cannot cure.”
Why art thou cast down, o my soul? And why art thou disquieted within me? Hope thou in God. For I shall yet praise Him, who is the health of my countenance and my God.” (Ps42:11)
Indeed, if it were not for hopes, the heart would break. More are completely wretched but those who are without hope. All is not lost; hope on!