Just Life

Hope | August 2019.

from this morning’s walk to the lake

I thought it would be nice to open this month’s update on Hope with a glimpse of the sunrise over the lake. Sadly, the slight drizzle that greeted me when I left the house didn’t register on my weather app. It’s hard to see a sunrise when there’s no sun. Thankfully, though, eight months into this Hope journey, I’m not seeing anything hopeless about it.

While I was in England, I read Richard Rohr’s, Everything Belongs. Subtitled “The Gifts of Contemplative Prayer”, this was another meaningful step in my exploration of Rohr’s work and perfect “morning work” while I awaited numerous UPS, Royal Mail and other deliveries. I highlighted a lot and took many pages of notes, but the lesson that resonated for today is this, from a section titled “The Power of Free Will” (p 106)

We recognize that we largely create our own experiences … We have the power to decide what each moment means and how we will respond to it. We have power when we know we have the ability to respond freely. We can decide if we’re going to respond to something hatefully or lovingly. We can decide to attack or ask for the gift of forgiveness, or at least the gift of understanding … This free decision is a resource source of power … that no one can take from us.

…and then I was reminded of Krista Tippett’s wise words

Hope, like every virtue, is a choice that becomes a practice that becomes spiritual muscle memory. It’s a renewable resource for moving through life as it is, not as we wish it to be.

This OLW is teaching me some wonderful lessons … and I’m thinking we all have lots of opportunities to practice these days.

Thank you to Juliann for hosting our meet-up. ♥


  • Honore´

    I always look forward to your monthly takes on your word…they do provide me/one with “hope.”
    Thank you for helping us to “keep hope alive!”

  • Kat

    Beautiful! It is so nice to read about choosing something positive – especially when there is so much that makes you want to choose the opposite!

  • Sarah

    The first quote really rings true to me and reminds me a lot of some of the lessons I learned through therapy — we can’t always control what happens to us, but what we can control is how we react to it.

  • Bonny

    This is such a hopeful post about hope, especially the way you framed your last sentence. There are days when the news brings only despair and discouragement, but perhaps I can turn things around if I view them as opportunities to practice hope (and take action).

  • Vera

    Wonderful post Mary. That first quote is so true – and one I need to remember. Thank you for sharing.

    Even with no sun showing, your lake photo is still very pretty.

  • Debbie

    What a lovely post about hope and I think the key to practicing hope (& grace) is paying attention to how we respond to all of those daily opportunities. Thank you, Mary!