Hope and Expectations


Brian Nagel Donald MillerI’m currently reading A Million Miles in 1000 Years by Donald Miller, one of my favorite authors.  I’ve also read a couple of his other efforts: Blue Like Jazz and Searching for God Knows What.  I’ve appreciated his down-to-earth, conversational style of writing.  I’m drawn to his sometimes blunt and open-book thought process on life, spirituality, and Christianity.  A Million Miles is about Miller’s venture into filmmaking, offering insight into the writing process and how it translates to real life – and real stories.  Below is a quote that has really resonated with me over the last couple of weeks:

“If I have a hope, it’s that God sat over the dark nothing and wrote you and me, specifically, into the story, and put us in with the sunset and the rainstorm as thought to say, Enjoy your place in my story.  The beauty of it means you matter, and you create within it even as I have created you.

“But I’ve noticed something.  I’ve never walked out of a meaningless movie thinking all movies are meaningless.  I only thought the movie I walked out on was meaningless.  I wonder, then, if people say life is meaningless, what they really mean is their lives are meaningless.  I wonder if they’ve chosen to believe their whole existence is unremarkable, and are projecting their dreary life on the rest of us.”

Hope is what keeps me going.  Hope that there’s a reason for why we are here.  Hope that there’s a bigger plan than the little bubble that surrounds me.  Hope that what I do in life will echo for eternity.

We all know people who don’t have any sense of hope or direction – you might be in that boat yourself (if so, let’s talk – it doesn’t have to be that way).  And in this world of “tolerance,” which seems to mean that you just accept everything and everybody, except those who try to live with a moral compass (“Don’t put your faith on me!” attitudes), there is no reason that one person’s lack of hope and purpose needs to be the way for another.  That’s why the above quote resonates so strong.

There’s a reason for why we are here, and there’s a purpose for everything we do.  I believe it, and I hope that the choices I make and the actions I take serve something greater than the immediate, because “the beauty of it means [it all] matter[s].”

Hope and Expectations | Brian Nagel

2 Responses to "Hope and Expectations"
  1. Heavy stuff. I wonder about that word “hope.” As Christians, does it mean the same as, “Gee, I hope the Red Sox win the World Series” or if it’s more of a looking forward to something that we already know about with certainty.

    • Good comparison – I’d like to think hope has deeper meaning than the Red Sox for most. Sometimes America concerns me, though… ~Brian

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