“Hope is believing in spite of the evidence . . . and then watching the evidence change.” This was another great quote from last Sunday’s sermon. I’m so glad I can choose to live my life based on hope rather than based on what appears to be evident.

Evidence might suggest that once a person experiences a cataclysmic failure, reaches a certain age, or gets a diagnosis of a progressive or degenerative disease such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s, that life is pretty much over.

My friend Dorothy took a job as a nurse in a nursing home in 1974 because she had no other option. She was divorced and hadn’t worked in a doctor’s office or hospital for more than five years. She thought her new job was the perfect punishment for being a failure as a wife. (Her husband had fallen in love with his lab assistant, because after 13 years of marriage and three kids, Dorothy just wasn’t that sexy or interesting any more.)

A few months after Dorothy started working in the nursing home, she wrote in her journal, “I thought I was going to be working in a warehouse where people were sent to die. I was so wrong! There’s a whole lot of living going on in this place!”

When Dorothy’s husband walked out on her, she thought she’d lost everything that mattered. She even considered suicide. She thought no one would ever love her again, that she would always have to do work she hated, and that she would never be happy again. Thank goodness Dorothy didn’t end her life, because she would have missed so much!

Sometimes days hard to see much hope in a situation. We are each on a journey. The destination may not be evident right now, but as long as we get up, get out of bed every morning and continue to put one foot in front of the other there is hope. Because when we survive and grow through our own failures and struggles, we often end up making a tremendous difference in the lives of others.