My yard is a habitat of trees
– redwoods, Douglas firs, live oaks, pine trees and red-limbed
madrones. A few days ago, I looked out the window and was amazed at
the sight. It seemed that overnight, new growth and green leaves
had popped out everywhere. Ta da! Spring had made a dramatic
My yard is a habitat of trees – redwoods, Douglas firs, live oaks, pine trees and red-limbed madrones. A few days ago, I looked out the window and was amazed at the sight. It seemed that overnight, new growth and green leaves had popped out everywhere. Ta da! Spring had made a dramatic entrance.
“Spring,” glowed transcendentalist writer Henry David Thoreau – is “an experience in immortality.”
Spring casts a magic spell, doesn’t it? It’s a time we feel energized and want to burst forth in singing “Oh, what a beautiful morning!” Nature’s orchestra fills the air with its own music, as birds harmonize heartily. The landscape is draped in vivid jewel-tone blooms: daffodils, azaleas, lilies, tulips. Excitement and expectation abound as we reawaken to the wonder of life. There is hope in the promise of Spring.
Hope is a fascinating phenomenon. Hope brings joy and juice for living. Hope looks at problems, large or small, as growth opportunities. Hope sets worthy goals and presses on through hard times and setbacks. Hope finds an open door while despair sees a dead end.
An article published in The Journal of Counseling and Development elaborates on the hope theme. The author, C. R. Snyder wrote, “High hope people have better outcomes in their lives. They have more goals, more difficult goals, greater success in achieving their goals.” He further emphasized that “Hope is not synonymous with intelligence, nor is it the same as being optimistic – it is more. High hope often assures the person of success in reaching goals. High intelligence may only give a person a chance.”
In essence, he is saying: Being highly hopeful is a lifeline to endless possibilities. Hope expands our horizons of achievement. Famed author, speaker and personality expert Dale Carnegie once remarked, “Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all.”
Mastermind explorer Christopher Columbus never gave up hope of finding a sea route to the Far East, even though it took ten years from the time he first hatched his bold plan until he set out across the Atlantic. He suffered harsh humiliation at the hands of Queen Isabella and the Spanish monarch, living hand-to-mouth, receiving only skimpy stipends. All the while strengthening and fostering hope, he spent years working behind the scenes, carefully charting and studying wind patterns and ocean currents. He traveled across Europe gathering information from mapmakers, government officials, sailors, scientists – anyone he thought could help him.
Through sheer persistence, Columbus ultimately prevailed against the intractable Isabella and her advisers. He believed it was his providence to make the fantastic voyage and never quit hoping and working until it happened. Astoundingly, the route he charted is still in use today.
A hopeful life propels us forward and epitomizes a wonderful way to live. My former boss, Zig Ziglar, author of See You At The Top, has a list of 15 items that define his interpretation of “the top.” Number 12 on the list is this one: “You’re at the top when you can look back in forgiveness, forward in hope, down in compassion and up with gratitude.”