"We must accept finite disappointment, but we must never lose infinite hope." ~ Martin Luther King Jr.
I'm now nearly 7 months through my 1 year commitment to actively search for hope every day and write about it. I'm in the thick of it and the remaining months of 2009 seem to be just around the bend. This is the side effect of working in a retail-focused business: I'm always one step ahead of myself because the industry I work in demands it. Looking for hope is sometimes an easy task and sometimes a game of hunt and peck. Some days I struggle to find something hopeful and positive, and other days it seems that the world is awash with hope, so much so that it's hard to take it all in and stay still long enough to write about it. It's these latter days that I try to focus on most.
I've become a fan of daily email delivery of my favorite blogs. I get why tools like Google Reader are valuable; I just prefer to use my gmail inbox as my to-do list. (Thank you, David Pogue, for that insight on email in-boxes!) And I like the idea that my favorite writers are sending me little bits of wisdom directly, or at least I feel like they're sending them to me directly. Daily Good, a blog that posts a daily story about some piece of goodness in the world, is one of my favorites. Their stories always begin with a quote, and it's responsible for many of the quotes that populate my "food for thought" section in the right side bar of this blog.
This week Daily Good posted up the quote above from Martin Luther King, Jr. He could have easily made the quote "We must accept disappointment, but we must never lose hope." Still powerful, still emotional, still inspirational. Instead, he chose to talk about finite disappointment and infinite hope, and link the two together. In my 7 months of writing about hope, I have found disappointment. More than I would have liked.
Just this week, I decided I had accepted enough disappointment. I'd reached the finite limit that Dr. King spoke about and then decided that I could no longer wait to do what I really wanted to do. With the help of some friends who help me think clearly, who help to bolster me up when I get a little bit down, I made a plan to turn all of my attention to what I hope to achieve and away from what's disappointed me. The hope was there all along, even through the disappointment. I just wasn't seeing it. We can all do a lot more than hope for a change; there will be no grand arrival and entrance of change. It's always there - we need only reach out and grab a hold of it.