Many of us are exhausted, sad, and angry. We need strength. We need hope. We need God. When the world is hard, we have to look harder. We are detectives searching for clues. Hope does not shout, but if we listen carefully we hear whispers. Hopeful things are happening, but we have to pay attention.
This week, a child in California gave a firefighter a hug.
A congressperson had second thoughts about assault rifles.
A relief worker in Puerto Rico handed a bottle of water to someone who was thirsty. He did not throw paper towels.
A diplomat from North Korea and a diplomat from the United States shared a pizza.
A 60-year-old ordered his morning coffee in Spanish for the first time.
A white NFL player asked an African American player why he was kneeling during the anthem, and listened to his response.
A black judge acquitted a white racist of a false murder charge.
A white police officer asked a black teenager how the police could be more helpful.
A Christian minister invited an imam to talk to her church’s youth group.
A senior citizen who has never been to a protest marched in support of immigrants.
An office manager sent a memo to the CEO pointing out that women are still paid less.
A father who thinks of himself as old school told his gay son how proud he is.
A homeless veteran went to Plymouth Church for dinner and a good night’s sleep.
A shopper at a car dealership decided to buy a hybrid.
A neighbor talked to an elderly woman sitting on her stoop.
A sophomore changed his major to social work.
An angry man started to make an angry phone call, but then hung up.
A book group picked Frederick Buechner for their next book.
A fan at a Bruce Springsteen concert believed again.
A scientist who usually watches MSNBC watched Fox News and thought, “I can understand how someone would feel that way.”
A bald man decided that hair is overrated.
A mother gave in and got her eight-year-old a puppy.
A couple going through a divorce decided to put the children first.
An architect received a text from an old friend inviting her to lunch.
A cabdriver picked up a fare in a wheelchair and took her to Key Food for free.
A doctor told an artist that she is going to have a girl.
A retired teacher laughed out loud for the first time since his wife’s death.
The world’s problems are devastating, so we keep looking for hope. We do not need to pretend everything is okay. We need to pay attention to the hope that surrounds us.