Keeping Hope in a Jar

‘Never let go of hope. One day you will see that it all has finally come together. What you have always wished for has finally come to be. You will look back and laugh at what has passed and you will ask yourself…’How did I get through all of that?’ ‘  (

Life would be so much easier if you could buy hope in a jar, especially when you are confronted with times when hope is hard to come by. The above quote strikes a special chord with me. I never thought it was possible to look back on a past that hurt you and laugh. But I can and I do. It also reminds me that whatever I perceive as hard will give me a reason to look back and laugh in the future. Hope is an amazing thing. You might be opening yourself up to hurt and even failure if you hope but it is also hope that gives you a reason to dust yourself off, pull your socks up as my mother used to (and continues to) say to me.

Last week I caught the hopeful bug big time, I convinced myself that my hopes would be realised, I convinced myself that signs were telling me I would find what I was looking for. In the end, I was wrong and although it was difficult to accept, my hope of finally finding it was giving me the strength to keep going. To keep getting up in the morning and working in a job that no longer holds any meaning for me.

I woke up this morning after a day of ‘putting a brave face’ on things (or at least hoping that was what I was doing), I was tempted to cocoon myself in my duvet and not emerge until at least midday. I was tempted to forget that it was Sunday and that as a Catholic, I belong in Church, at Mass. ‘Belong’ is a carefully chosen word, because that was exactly how I felt. Quite often with travel and indeed ‘life’ my faith, I am ashamed to say has taken a back seat. However, walking into my Catholic church this morning, I instantly felt at home. As I walked through those large, oak doors and smelt the faint scent of wood and candles, it didn’t matter what had occurred in the ‘outside world’, or indeed how long I had been away, I was home. It reminded me of my younger years, when the arms of a parent could always chase away the bullies and demons of childhood and adolescence.

People change, they can hurt you, disappoint you – yet Mass is the only constant in my life. When going to Church in foreign countries, and listening to Mass in a foreign language, I still felt at home. I still felt I belonged there. Ultimately, religion and faith is about hope. Hope that your good deeds in this life will reward you in the next. Hope that what you believe in is in fact truth. Nothing is certain in life, but the one thing that will metaphorically keep the wheels of life moving is hope.

Although you can not always see hope, it is always there. Perhaps to remind me, from now on I will create my own ‘hope in a jar’. Pictures and memories of the past that may or may not give me a reason to laugh and say: “how did I get through that?”.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ruby slippers
    Jul 12, 2011 @ 21:55:09

    Another beautiful piece of insightful writing! X


  2. grandmac
    Jul 19, 2011 @ 12:10:17

    Very true!
    Sometimes what you hope for is not really what you need so not getting it is sometimes a blessing.
    And yes hearing Mass in a different language is always a revelation and a surprise as you know where you are even if you can’t make the responses in the right language.

    Just keep the flame lit and life will be what it was meant to be for you.


  3. Trackback: A Time For Everything « Alphabet Games

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