Hope has been a really big thing recently. I feel like it’s everywhere. Whether it’s Instagram, Facebook, blogs, friends, communities or just me in general. Everyone, every day is hoping for something. I’m taking a philosophy class right now and something we’ve talked about is that you aren’t supposed to hope because hope is empty. According to philosophy, we aren’t supposed to hope because that means we are thinking in the future which is also bad because we then fear death…I know, I don’t get it either. I’ve never really understood philosophy or agreed with it, which is because it contradicts Christianity. So, I disagree, hope is everything BUT empty.
This past week, we focused on the topic of hope in my class and a mentor to me started a series within her series. I’m not sure if that is the correct way to refer to it but she has been doing something called a Hope Series for a few years. I’ve been babysitting for her children for 4 years and while doing so, I’ve learned a lot from her and what her series is about. They are heart wrenching, beautiful, happy, sad, hard to read and exciting to read, to me this is hope. She just started, what I referred to as a series within a series. Every day there are parts of stories posted to a Facebook page called Connor’s Hero’s Foundation about children who have had, are currently going through or unfortunately didn’t beat their battle with cancer or another life altering disease. So far, the stories have been posted in parts of 4. I didn’t understand this at first, or really like it because I wanted to read the whole story and know the outcome for the family. Today, I read the first part of a story that could have ended two ways; she could kick cancers butt and be free of the awful disease or she could fight with every ounce of her being and die a fighter. I read the final part of that story later in the afternoon, 4/4 was the start, by the end I had tears running down my face. I don’t know the real reason that the stories of these children and their families are posted in parts but for me it’s because I need to read it slowly and see just how real this is. Kristin, of Kristin Seward Photography (Lens of Hope) has always had a beautiful way of writing these stories and photographing the touching moments. No matter how sad or heartbreaking the story is she gives a sense of hope and shows the hope that was always there. Without hope, children, adults, family and friends who get the news that no one wants to hear, has nothing to live for and no fight in them. That’s why I choose hope.
If cancer hasn’t touched your life personally, I couldn’t be more happy for you. If we aren’t currently hoping for a good diagnosis, we are hoping for something else. Couples hoping to expand their family, a friend or spouse hoping for a raise or job acceptance, students hoping for a good grade on a test or projects, hope for good check-ups, there is always something to hope for.
We have so many social media outlets to share information on, whether it’s good or bad people are more likely to post something that people can read before they are to share it personally with someone. I have over 800 friends on Facebook and I can admit that I would much rather them read my blog posts without me seeing their reactions or hearing their opinions if I were to verbally tell them what my posts say face to face. I see a lot of negative, I know I’m guilty of it as well. I hear of a lot of groups for people facing the same challenges and I want there to be hope within them. Having outlets where we can share out challenges and struggles is an awesome sense of community that everyone should have in their lives. We have groups within our church, our schools, our work group, our friends and family and we have the ability to build each other up, pray for one another and hope with each other.
Sometimes I wonder if I hope too much. Huck always tells me to slow down and keep my goals and ambitions but don’t worry too much. I tell him the same, but I also tell him to hope more and not let the negative cancel out the hope. I have small hopes and big hopes. I hope for a great senior year, good health for my family and friends, the continuation of a happy relationship, and I’m sure there’s more everyday but my big hopes consume more of my thoughts. I hope for more Childhood Cancer Research funds. I hope for a cure for cancer. I hope for a better United States. I hope for terrorism to become a thing of the past. I hope for better education in countries that don’t have the resources. I hope for more hope.
I hope this post gives people more motivation and hope. Realize that the terrible things that are happening in our world are REAL but that doesn’t mean we give up hope. Learn, research and do everything you can to spread the word and increase the hope for these different things. My philosophy book says “hope a little less, love a little more” (Luc Ferry), I want to change that sentence to, “hope a little more, love a lot more.”
If you would like to read these stories or donate to the cause visit Kristin Seward // Lens of Hope and Connor’s Hero’s Foundation on Facebook where you can also donate if you feel so inclined.