Hope Floats


I don’t know how or why it happens, but it seems that whenever my wife and I go out to the theater we end up seeing what some have coined as a “Chick Flick”. A number of years ago we saw a movie entitled “Hope Floats”. It was a typical romantic comedy with a typical plot and ending. However, the movie title does have significant meaning. What does the title of the movie mean? We have all floated down a stream. Most of us have felt like we are “floating on air” when we experience certain emotions such as love.  How then does “hope” float? And if hope does float, what does it float us over? In a word, hope helps us float over “despair.” How important is it to have hope? In his great address on this subject, President Dieter Uchtdorf said;

”Hope is one leg of a three-legged stool, together with faith and charity. These three stabilize our lives regardless of the rough or uneven surfaces we might encounter at the time. The scriptures are clear and certain about the importance of hope. The Apostle Paul taught that the scriptures were written to the end that we “might have hope.” Hope has the power to fill our lives with happiness. Its absence—when this desire of our heart is delayed—can make “the heart sick.”

Hope is a gift of the Spirit. It is a hope that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the power of His Resurrection, we shall be raised unto life eternal and this because of our faith in the Savior… Hope in our Heavenly Father’s merciful plan of happiness leads to peace, mercy, rejoicing, and gladness. The hope of salvation is like a protective helmet; it is the foundation of our faith and an anchor to our souls. (“The Infinite Power of Hope”).

Despair is a terrible burden to bear. It saps every bit of joy out of life. President Uchtdorf said it best in the continuance of the same conference talk by saying;

“The adversary uses despair to bind hearts and minds in suffocating darkness. Despair drains from us all that is vibrant and joyful and leaves behind the empty remnants of what life was meant to be. Despair kills ambition, advances sickness, pollutes the soul, and deadens the heart. Despair can seem like a staircase that leads only and forever downward. Hope, on the other hand, is like the beam of sunlight rising up and above the horizon of our present circumstances. It pierces the darkness with a brilliant dawn. It encourages and inspires us to place our trust in the loving care of an eternal Heavenly Father…”

It can be difficult to have hope when despair so easily abounds! I don’t think there is anyone who hasn’t felt despair at one time or another in their life.  But our knowledge of the plan of salvation should provide the light needed in order to drive despair from our lives. At times that light can seem distant, but it is ever steady and constant. Hope is like the North Star providing direction and guidance in the stormy seas of life. It is hope that floats us to rise above the waters of despair. It really is a life-preserver that keeps our souls from drowning in the depths of sorrow. The Lord has provided “hope”, but it is up to us to put it on and use its buoyancy to lift us to the surface of this life. There is always joy to be found, but our heads must be above the water to see it. Put on hope, it is a lifesaver!


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