Hope is Essential in Hard Times

by Jan on March 14, 2011

“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.’”
- Mary Anne Radmacher, author

At the time of this writing, Mother Nature has dealt a terrible blow to the Japanese people. They are living with the aftermath of earthquakes, tsunamis, possible nuclear reactor meltdowns and an erupting volcano.

Serenity is difficult in the face of the devastation. Fear takes over automatically. It is easy to become paralyzed when survival is at stake.

In the 1990’s, after a devastating earthquake, the Japanese decided to take new precautions. They took steps to shore up walls, rebuild and design new buildings with stricter codes. They had the desire to make things better, and in that was HOPE for a better outcome. Their foresight has made a difference today.

It is true that preparedness is important—it saves lives. But what is in us that leads us to prepare?

To me, it is HOPE.

It has been proven time and again that we have great resilience. We are ready to pick up the pieces after shattering events. We brush ourselves off and start all over again.

Ships from the United States are on the way to aid Japan. Thirty-nine countries are also sending aid. Doctors Without Borders have brought supplies to help people in the most impacted areas and are already rolling up their sleeves to help.

Nate Berkus, a celebrity interior designer, survived the tsunami that inundated Thailand and surrounding countries in 2004. Unfortunately, Nate’s partner Fernando lost his life in that disaster.

During his time in the water, Nate said he felt as if he were dropped into the spin cycle of a washing machine. There was almost nothing to hang on to. They were in utter devastation without food, water or clothing.

Later, with the sight of the Red Cross arriving, he recognized the feeling of HOPE again.

Nate, in a CNN interview this weekend, recounted his feelings, “Keep up the HOPE that you will find who you are looking for. Don’t give up on HOPE — there is always a chance. Pray and HOPE”.

So I ask you to do as Nate, myself, as well as millions of others are doing: HOPE  the best for the Japanese people. Please consider a contribution to the Red Cross.