Christians recognize the word because it falls between Paul’s three items which remain at the base of things: “Faith, Hope, and Love”.
But what is Hope?
In the verse mentioned above, 1 Corinthians 13:13, Paul used the word ἐλπίς. (Okay, I may have just wanted to use the Greek alphabet.) Transliterated to “elpis”, from elpo, which is “Hope, expectation, trust, or confidence” (Strong’s Greek Concordance)
Thayer’s Greek Lexicon states that ἐλπίς used in the classic form as it is in this verse (as it is always seen in the N.T.), refers to the expectation of good, or the joyful expectation of eternal salvation.
But Hope isn’t just for the Christians (though I know some Christians might argue that). Hope is for all man. Gentiles and Jews, all races, all genders. People feel hope.
Or at least people should feel hope.
I’m scrolling down my twitter or Facebook news feed and I see a lot of hopelessness.
Did you know that depression isn’t the main cause of suicide?
Hopelessness is. Hopelessness is a symptom of depression.
Clinically depressed individuals have a high rate of successful suicide attempts. But they are in the minority of total suicide attempts.
I see the negative news posted online- wars, riots, violence blamed on race or religion, child abuse, child neglect, teenagers thinking antisocial behaviors are cool- and one thing that I see that accompanies them, either in the post or in the comments “I’ve lost a little hope in humanity”. Trust, confidence, the expectation that something GOOD might come from humanity…
… is lost.
DOES THIS BOTHER ANYONE?
THIS SHOULD BOTHER YOU.
We will become that which we hate. Those things we set our minds to dwell upon are those things which will permeate our character.
So yes. As long as we continue to perpetuate this loss of hope for the human race, then the human race will continue to lose hope.
As a species, we will draw dangerously close to suicide.
And I refuse.
I’m taking a pledge. I’m taking a stance.
Stop glorifying the negative. Stop perpetuating this belief that humanity has lost hope.
This is my project. I’ve dubbed it “Hope for Humanity”.
For every negative article you read- whether its on racism, war, some tragedy- post two positive ones. Or post three. Post as many as you can possibly find. Good news DESERVES to be shared. Let humanity know that there is hope. There is reason to expect good.
And if you can’t find any positive news. Go make positive news.
It’s summer- buy a case of water and drive around giving it to joggers or workers outside.Buy someone’s coffee at Starbucks.
Go play chess with the elderly in a convalescent home.
Talk to them, hear their stories. Record it. Blog about it. Post it. Record other people restoring your hope in humanity. Laud that.
It’s not that difficult. While serving with a non-profit organization such as a church or social program is great, you, yourself, can act independently pro-social.
I’m asserting the hypothesis that the best way to reduce the incidence of antisocial behaviors is to increase the social reinforcement of pro-social behaviors.
Be the reason people retain their hope in the human race. Be the reason people find strength in the hope for the human race.