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Hope Keeps Its Eyes Open

But hope is a misunderstood word. Hope is often confused with "wish." We have lived the age-old scenario: "Blow out the birthday candles, close your eyes, and make a wish." The problem comes in closing the eyes. A wish always closes its eyes. A wish imagines something that cannot happen. But hope is different. Hope keeps its eyes wide-open, sees how things really are, imagines what things could be, and works for that.

We heard some people "hope for peace." Truth be told, they aren't hoping for peace so much as they are wishing for peace. They are blowing out birthday candles and expecting magic. Because, you see, a wish is always a wish for magic. But if we hope for peace, it wires us differently.

- Bill Carter, "A Shout in the Dark," a sermon in response to the Newtown massacre, 12/16/12, published in A Good Word, an e-book edited by Landon Whitsitt, 2012, p. 34.