Reflecting on Hope

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March 9, 2023
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November 26, 2023

A famous (missing) song...

Here’s a task for you: try to think of a famous song that has the word ‘hope’ in its title or in the chorus – one that was played on the radio recently; one that runs in a commercial ad; one that just about everybody knows.

Take your time – I’ll wait. . . .

Most people struggle to think of such a song immediately. And if you think of hope being ‘in the air, everywhere I look around . . .’ (John Paul Young), well, it makes sense, but the word ‘hope’ is not there – it’s ‘love’.

Try harder, as I’m pretty sure you’re already finding it a bit challenging.

Of course, there are songs that inspire hope, whether as a desire or as an expectation; whether the singer is waiting in confidence or aspiring with trust. You may have been touched by a sad story or a catastrophic event shared in the news; you may think of the expectation that our team will win the World Cup, or may be expecting a cruel diagnosis from your GP – all of these and more call us to think positive, to move on, to conquer, to believe in something beyond, to overcome the crisis, and even to imagine a better world.

To be sure, there are many famous quotes on ‘hope’ in literature, and key verses are being shared by the religions of the world. But how come there isn’t an easy-to-remember song on ‘hope’? (I could easily find some entitled ‘hopeless’ . . .)

'We Have This Hope'

Now, I do have a famous song on hope – and it’s in the title, in the chorus, in every stanza. Some of the readers of this magazine may know it. It’s entitled ‘We Have This Hope’, and the music and words were composed by Wayne Hooper, way back in 1962. He used to be a singer in the King’s Heralds quartet, and later became a music director for the ‘Voice of Prophecy’ radio station.

What if I told you that this song, ‘We Have This Hope’, is a key one for millions of people – that it’s like the battle hymn of an army? No exaggeration: some 22 million people around the world know the tune and can whistle or sing it right away.

Have I got your attention now?

It’s powerful because it’s not just a song that fades away, and it’s surely not an empty slogan. It’s an affirmation of faith and a promotion of life, sung by people of hope.

A handful of them have written articles on this website, and published this 'Reflecting Hope' special edition of FOCUS magazine. Within the UK and Ireland there are tens of thousands of these hope-filled people. Some of them may be your neighbours, colleagues, people in the community.

These are people who not only sing about hope for a better life, but also live on average ten years longer than the general population, and they’re ready to reveal their secrets: with the Jews or the Muslims, sharing faith in one God and trusting the ancient Scriptures; with those of no faith, yet in search of a better world, spearheading the fight for the common good, engaging in the frontlines of community care, the medical field, humanitarian aid, education and advocacy (ADRA); mingling with the hopeless, the marginalised, the immigrants, the lonely.

Do they also share hope with you?

In the global village of the UK and Ireland, people of hope speak your language, eat your kind of food, dress like you, and treat all people as equals.

There’s something about them, and it’s not just a song on hope, not just an aspiration. They are real . . . and I know it, as I am one of them. You can be one as well – living a meaningful life, reflecting on hope.

Reflecting Hope!

Christian Salcianu is the director of ADC | Adventist Discovery Centre (UK and Ireland).