I found a picture of me playing the ukulele at the age of 5.

The look on my face is pure joy and the thrill of thinking “I am doing this. Who knows what else I can do?

I’ll try all kinds of things and be good at them, probably.”

It was the face of possibilities. It is the face of HOPE.

I have come to realize that many I have met over the years spent time telling me one way or another the reasons why I can’t succeed at the things I am willing to try.

Fortunately, not everyone! And even more fortunately, I didn’t always listen to those voices. Maybe you recognize those voices too.

The difference for me was HOPE. It helps me to write them maybe it will help you to read them..

Hope-note 23

HOPE-note 23

“Then Hope comes along and puts wind in our sails of faith.” -Bishop M. Curry “I am losing all hope. I am paralyzed with fear.” -Psalm 143:4 TAKE HEART! A raft adrift at sea is not the inspiring picture we put on our walls. A sailing ship at full speed, powering through the waves with

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Hope-note 22

HOPE-note 22

“Generosity breaks the power of greed!” -A Barnhart “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for the orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” -James 1:27 TAKE HEART! Why are some people generous? Maybe they were there in need once themselves and

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Hope-note 21

HOPE-note 21

“Are you talking to me?” -Robert De Niro (Taxi Driver) “Then Samuel said, ‘Speak for your servant is listening.” -1 Samuel 3:9 TAKE HEART! The same question asked two different ways tells us something. The question asked by Robert DeNiro intimidates. It became well known and often imitated usually in a New York accent. It’s a

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Hope-note 20

HOPE-note 20

“We have an eternal debt we can never pay. We are spiritually bankrupt. No matter how hard we work, our bank account reads Insufficient Funds! “ -D. Gray “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.”  -Matthew 5:3 TAKE HEART! The goal of a debt free financial life is often

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Hope-note 19

HOPE-note 19

“YES and NO” Mary responded, “ I am the Lord’s servant, and I am willing to say yes to whatever He wants.” -Luke 1:36 TAKE HEART! They are one syllable words, yet they are powerful. We say yes to this and no to that. We go this way to yes or that way to no.

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Hope-note 18

HOPE-note 18

“Knock, knock! Who’s there?” “And to anyone who knocks, the door will be open.” -Matthew 7:8 TAKE HEART! The children’s “knock, Knock” joke is well known, easily told and usually brings a quick smile or groan, followed by a smile. I am thinking about that joke today as we start a new year. I see

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Hope-note 17

HOPE-note 17

“If you want to build a relationship with God you have to slow down and be quiet.” -R. Warren “I waited patiently for the Lord and He inclined towards me and heard my cry for help.” -Psalm 40 TAKE HEART! Hope needs to be nourished. It requires patience. Growing Hope is consistent work. As counter

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Hope-note 16

HOPE-note 16

“Mary did you know when you kissed you baby child you kissed the face of God?” -B. Greene & M. Lowery – song writers “So, God created human beings in His own image.” -Genesis 1:27 TAKE HEART! Theologians have much to say about the meaning in the book of Genesis of being created in the

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Hope-note

HOPE-note 15

“God has more ropes, ladders and tunnels out of pits than you can conceive. Wait. Pray without ceasing. Hope.” -John Piper “Master” said David. “don’t give up hope. I am ready to go fight the Philistine.” TAKE HEART! Would a young boy with a sling and stone be the answer a King would think of

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Hope-note 14

HOPE-note 14

“The sky is the color of orange at sunrise and sunset; that color gives us hope that with every sunset the sun will rise again.” -Ram Charan “Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning.” -Lamentations 3:23 TAKE HEART! The sun sets, yes. But it sends a message with the setting that says

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Hope-note 13

HOPE-note 13

“Love recognizes no boundaries. It leaps fences, jumps barriers and penetrates walls to reach its destination full of hope.” -M Angelou “Doesn’t your reverence give you confidence? Doesn’t your life of integrity give you hope?” -Job 4:6 TAKE HEART! What gives you hope? Can we earn the right to hope? Respect is earned. Trust is

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Hope-note12

HOPE-note 12

“Hold fast to your dreams. For if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that can not fly.” -L. Hughes “How long O Lord.” -Psalm 94 TAKE HEART! We often ask God questions only He can answer. We ask “Why?” We ask “How?” Some say we should not ask these questions but instead we should

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Hope-note 11

HOPE-note 11

“Your toughest battle is between what you know and what you feel.” -Anon. “Now do what you have been taught. School’s out; stop studying the subject and start living it out.” -2 Corinthians TAKE HEART! I just need to know a little more. I’m almost ready to begin except I need to check out one

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Hope-note 10

HOPE-note 10

“There was never a night or problem that could defeat a sunrise or HOPE. -B. Williams “in the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice. In the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” -Psalm 5 TAKE HEART! The morning comes. It always comes. So why do we sit fearfully in

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Hope-note 9

HOPE-note 9

“The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even touched but must be felt with the heart.” -H. Keller “Delight yourself in God and He will give you the desires of your heart.” -Psalm 37 TAKE HEART! We are drawn to them, right? A sunrise, a sunset or the amazingly

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Hope-note 8

HOPE-note 8

“Never, never, never give up!” -W. Churchill “I rise before dawn and cry out for help. My HOPE is in your words.” -Psalm 119 TAKE HEART! Have you ever wakened before dawn with so much on your mind you can’t sleep? You can’t lie there. Yet, you don’t want to get out of bed. Who

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Hope-note 7

HOPE-note 7

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal, it is the courage to continue that counts.” -W. Churchill “But this I call to mind and therefore I have hope.” -Lamentations 3 TAKE HEART! Memories are often our greatest source of Hope. We hear “you can’t live in the past, and that’s true. We have a

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Hope-note 6

HOPE-note 6

“We must accept finite disappointment but never lose infinite hope.” -Martin Luther King “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits for the Lord and in His Word, I hope; Like a watchman I wait, like a watchman.” -Psalm 130 TAKE HEART! Waiting is work.  Anyone who has ever waited for something deeply desired to break

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Hope-note 5

HOPE-note 5

“There is wisdom of the head and there is wisdom of the heart.” -Charles Dickens “For He loves us with unfailing love; the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.” -Psalm 117 TAKE HEART! Life is made up of thousands and thousands of daily decisions.  One morning we wake and say, “How did I get here?”  “How

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Hope-note 4

HOPE-note 4

“Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come.  You wait and watch and work; you don’t give up.”   -Anne Lamott “I waited patiently for the Lord and He turned to me and heard my cry.  He lifted me out

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Hope-note 3

HOPE-note 3

“The performance of the microchip doubles every two years from the first-generation chip in 1971. If this happened to a 1971 VW Beetle, then at today’s performance it would look like the following: It would go 300,000 miles/per hour Travel 2,000,000 miles on a gallon of gas And cost 4 cents” -T. Friedman “Reverence for

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Hope-note 2

HOPE-note 2

“Only in the darkness can you see the stars.” -Martin Luther King “Again, Jesus spoke to them saying: I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” -John 8:12 TAKE HEART! What lives in the darkness cannot live in the light. The

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Hope-note 1

HOPE-note 1

“I dwell in possibility” -E. Dickerson “The Lord will work out His plans for my life, for your faithful love endures forever.” -Psalm 138 TAKE HEART! Wherever we find ourselves today, we can be sure we are not staying there. The possibility of somewhere else, something else is always present. Not like “the grass is

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