by Bryan J. Neva, Sr.
I believe that God has put into all of us a deep desire to improve ourselves and our circumstances in life. Whether or not we earnestly try to improve ourselves and our circumstances is completely up to us. (After all, we have free-will.) And it is "hope" that keeps us going when we see the gap between what we are and what we could be, or the gap between our present circumstances and our desired circumstances.
We can't live very long without hope. When we lose hope we give into despair or despondency and we stop trying to improve ourselves or our circumstances in life. When this happens we start to indulge in self-centered or self-destructive behaviors and we give into our base instincts.
We may become despondent, but God never stops trying to help us bridge the gap between what we are and what we could be and give us hope. In 1848, John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801 - 1890) wrote this beautiful poem that many have found very comforting during difficult times.
if I do but keep His commandments and serve Him in my calling.
I ask not to see... I ask not to know... I ask simply to be used.