Hope for Life Blog

The Power of Hope

by on Jul.14, 2008, under Hope

There’s a story that tells of a woman who volunteered with the school district in a large city. Specifically, she was helping tutor children who were forced to miss school due to illness. One day she was given a name and a hospital room number, with this written instruction from the teacher: “We’re studying nouns and adverbs in his class now, and I’d be grateful if you could help him understand them so he doesn’t fall too far behind.”

When the woman arrived at the hospital room, she found a young boy who had been badly burned that was lying in great pain in the bed. Overwhelmed by the sight of this boy, all she could do was blurt out, “I’ve been sent by your school to help you with nouns and adverbs.” After working with the child for a time, she left feeling foolish. What good were grammar lessons to a boy in his condition?

However, her visit had a tremendous impact on the boy. Before seeing the tutor, the boy had been slowly deteriorating. After her visit, he seemed to find his will to live, working with therapists, eating meals, responding to treatments. Later the boy explained, “I had just about given up, assuming I was going to die. But when this teacher came, I realized that I was going to be all right. They wouldn’t send someone to work on nouns and adverbs with a dying boy, would they?” What this woman shared about grammar was of relative benefit to the boy. But the hope that she brought to his life made all the difference. It saved his life.

Is the story true? I don’t know. Is the lesson true? Without a doubt. Hope is a powerful thing, giving us strength at times when nothing else can. They say that as the famous atheist Jean-Paul Sartre drew close to his death, he fought against despair, insisting that he would die in hope. But he also acknowledged, “Hope needs a foundation.”

God provides hope. He is the perfect foundation for our hope, the one that will never fail. Hope built on God and His promises need never fail. I am convinced that this hope, more than any other, can change lives and provide a sense of meaning in this world. The prophet Isaiah wrote: “[i]Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint[/i]” (Isaiah 40:31). Almost three thousand years later, it’s still true.

Grace and peace,
Tim Archer

6 comments for this entry:

  1. Tim Archer

    Thanks, Joanne. Your words are an encouragement as well.

    Grace and peace,

  2. joanne

    What great encouragement – In the tutor’s mind, she felt foolish, thinking her actions were worthless – God uses the weak and foolish to show how powerful He is and to bring hope to this world.

  3. Janet Sears

    What an encouraging story. I’m 66 years of age, and have been going thru such a difficult time recently. I have been doubting I’m any use to anyone any more. It seems everyone is too busy, my own family included, and I feel worn out, and although I try I just feel discouraged at every turn. I have been there, encouraging, lifting everyone up all my life, and for some reason recently I just feel used up and taken advantage of. But I know now that is just satan’s lie, and that I can still be an encourager to young and old alike. God bless you. Janet

  4. Tim Archer

    God bless you Janet. Just remember that we aren’t always aware of it when God is using us. I’m sure He can still use you in many ways.

    Grace and peace,

  5. Sid Lim

    simple story yet he moves my heart. thanks for this Tim, I really need this hope every single of my days.

    GODBLESS ^_^

  6. Tim Archer

    Thank you Sid. May God bless you as well.

    Grace and peace,
    Tim Archer

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