Friday, February 20, 2015

Knowing When To Give Up Hope


When I first ran across the "I feel much better now..." statement in the graphic (on a bumper sticker) I dismissed it as just another funny one-line absurdity.

But sometimes we are better off selectively "giving up hope" for things we are powerless to do anything about. Another term for this is acceptance, as in the well known Serenity Prayer, where one asks for the grace to "accept the things I cannot change".

Or as in this piece by author Amy Carmichael:

He said, "I will forget the dying faces;
The empty places,
They shall be filed again.
O voices moaning deep within me, cease,"
But vain the word; vain, vain:
Not in forgetting lieth peace. 

He said, "I will crowd action upon action,
The strife of faction shall stir me and sustain;
O tears that drown the fire of manhood, cease."
But vain the word; vain, vain:
Not in endeavor lieth peace.

He said, "I will withdraw me and be quiet,
Why meddle in life's riot?
Shut be my door to pain.
Desire, thou dost befool me, thou shalt cease."
Not in aloofness lieth peace.

He said, "I will submit; I am defeated.
God hath depleted My life of its rich gain.
O futile murmurings, why will ye not cease?"
But vain the word; vain, vain:
Not in submission lieth peace.

He said, "I will accept the breaking sorrow
Which God tomorrow will to His Son explain."
Then did the turmoil deep within him cease.
Not vain the word, not vain;
For in Acceptance lieth peace.
 -Amy Carmichael

I feel so much better now.
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