Nestled in the decorative rock among my beautiful rhododendrons, I discovered what looked like trash.  To my big surprise, it was not trash!  Instead, it was a neatly folded piece of white paper.  As I gently unfolded it, a word appeared in perfect block letters:  Hopefulness.

This mysterious message became a gift to me.  It is not a word I use, but the fact is I need hopefulness.  My family needs hopefulness.  American needs hopefulness.  You need hopefulness.  With so much pain, suffering and hurt, where can we find hopefulness?

In contrast, I have been internally investigating a human condition and have asked hundreds of people this simple question:  “In your life experience, what percentage of people are on a path of self-destruction?”  Most say the answer is between 50% and 80% in some way or another.

A plane passenger next to me answered this way: “My father died an early death because he destroyed his body; he self-destructed.”  One highly acclaimed math education said, “In over 30 years, 80% of my students did not value learning.”  This is a form of self-destruction.

My observation is humankind is on a self-destruction treadmill.  Ask Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Ted Kennedy, Robin Williams, a neighbor down my street.  They had it all, yet all was not enough.

With gratitude, Fred and Susie Crowell had our life treadmill unplugged many years ago.  We got off the self-destruction treadmill.  Hopefulness became our reality.  We found our hopefulness at the foot of the cross.  For it is there humanity can terminate the terrible treadmill that causes wars among nations, wars in families and wars personally.

The human condition needs hopefulness.  Where do you find your hopefulness?  You can’t live without it.  Choose carefully.  Choose wisely.  Your life depends on it.