If You Need the Gift of Hope Today

When it comes to love languages, gifts and words are where it’s at for me. If you really want to fill my emotional tank to overflowing, find a way to combine the two. Card, note, book, wall hanging, blog comment—it makes no difference. It’s the thought behind the message, not the format, that speaks to my heart.


Given my affinity for words, I suppose it’s not surprising that I also love a good quote. I suspect the same is true for many of you, so today, I want to share a few personal favorites. Consider this post a gift basket of hope-filled thoughts—carefully selected by me, just for you.

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I think of this first quote often when I am not looking forward to something I have to do later. It’s a great reminder to be in the moment and let tomorrow (or this afternoon) take care of itself.

You have a disagreeable duty to do at twelve o’clock. Do not blacken nine and ten and eleven, and all between, with the color of twelve.—George MacDonald

After reading a post I wrote about the saddest form of comparison, an online friend from Australia shared this C.S. Lewis quote in the comments section (thanks, Christine). There’s much to chew on here, as there always is with Mr. Lewis. But what I appreciate the most (besides the remodeling analogy, of course) is the hope that flows freely from the final lines.

Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to?

The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of—throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.—C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

My daughter Lilly and I recently finished watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy together for the first time. Of the three movies, the second one is my least favorite. But this conversation between the discouraged hobbit Frodo Baggins and his dear companion Samwise Gamgee is a highlight—one that inspires me every time I watch the film.

Frodo: “I can’t do this, Sam.”

Sam: “I know. It’s all wrong. By rights we shouldn’t even be here. But we are. It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger, they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end. Because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened?

“But in the end, it’s only a passing thing, this shadow. Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something, even if you were too small to understand why.

“But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. They kept going. Because they were holding on to something.”

Frodo: “What are we holding onto, Sam?”

Sam: “That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo… and it’s worth fighting for.”

When loss or disappointment steals your joy, you can always count on Max Lucado to deliver some much-needed encouragement. Sometimes, taking the long view really does help.

One thing is certain. When the final storm comes and you are safe in your Father’s house, you won’t regret what he didn’t give. You will be stunned at what he did.—Max Lucado, Traveling Light

Finally, it’s hard to put together a gift basket of hope-filled quotes without including at least one scripture. And out of all the passages I could choose, this one seems most fitting today.

Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.—2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Lois Flowers

P.S. Linking up this week with Kelly Balarie at Purposeful Faith, Jennifer Dukes Lee at #TellHisStory, Lyli Dunbar at #ThoughtProvokingThursday, Holley Gerth at Coffee for Your Heart, Missional Women and Aimee Imbeau at Grace & Truth.

28 Responses to If You Need the Gift of Hope Today

  1. Christine says:

    Hi Lois

    I love quotes, and CS Lewis quotes most of all. The LOTR quote is also in my quote file. And the George McDonald one which I also got from the Mitford series. That series is really good for quotes. I think I particularly like it because when there is a quote in the book, it comes in context with something that’s happening in someone’s life, so it has real meaning.

    Of course, all these quotes really have meaning because they bring us back to the truth and hope and comfort of God’s word.

    Blessings to you today.

    • Lois Flowers says:

      That’s a great observation about quotes in the Mitford books, Christine … the way Jan Karon incorporates them into her stories makes them so much more memorable. And now you’ve got me hoping she writes another book sometime soon. 🙂 Thanks again for your contribution to this gift basket of quotes!

  2. Wow. I have never read that passage from C.S. Lewis before, but I love it! What a great perspective! Thank you for sharing this. I am having a “bad pain day” and needed some fresh hope. <3

  3. Lois….I am a huge quote fanatic myself. I was smitten by the power of words in the 9th grade. I knew back then that I wanted to write. I used to email my entire team a quote for the day each morning before we started work. I am thankful and blessed most of all by the words of hope from God’s word. Thank you for sharing gifts of hope with us today. Have a wonderful weekend and may God bless you and yours!

  4. Shannon says:

    Hi there Lois! I’m your neighbor over at Grace and Truth today! WORDS. I love them as well. I am a sucker for all of these signs and plaques that are so popular today! This was my first time here…nice to meet you! xo

  5. Liz says:

    Thank you for your gift of words today! What a blessing to my soul! xo, liz

  6. Dawn says:

    Love these quotes!!! I totally understand your language, being a word nerd with you, too, the affirmation of words does mean a great deal. I love these words by Lucy Maud Montgomery that may affirm your word loving heart. “Kindred spirits are not so scarce as I used to think. It’s splendid to find out there are so many of them in the world.” It is beautiful when you find a connection that crosses geographical boundaries and connects hearts by a unity of grace.

    Lots of hope here!:)

    • Lois Flowers says:

      That’s a beautiful quote, Dawn. Before I started blogging (about 1 1/2 years ago), I didn’t really anticipate making those kinds of connections here. I don’t know why, exactly; that’s just how I felt. Happily, though, I was wrong. Words–especially transparent words about faith–really do draw kindred spirits together! So glad you stopped by today … 🙂

  7. Yes, I love words. How did you know? 😉
    This is a wonderful collection!

  8. Lois! These are beautiful. I particularly like the George McDonald and the C.S. Lewis quores. So much to think about and to HOPE for. 🙂 Thanks for this beautiful gift.

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Betsy, I think I originally found the George MacDonald quote in a book from the Mitford Series … now that’s a great source of wonderful thoughts! Glad you liked my little gift basket!

  9. Love!! I’m such a quote girl, Lois and I’m going to keep these close. The Max Lucado one – wow! Thank you so much for sharing these unique and meaningful words with us today. xoxo

  10. Trudy says:

    I love this gift basket of hope-filled thoughts, Lois. Thank you! These lines from the movie especially give me encouragement – “Even darkness must pass. A new day will come. And when the sun shines it will shine out the clearer. Those were the stories that stayed with you.” And the verse fills me with such hope and inspires me to keep fixing my eyes on that unseen glory that is sure to come. Blessings and hugs to you!

  11. Lois, what a great, hope-filled post. As I read the conversation between Frodo and Samwise, I could see the setting and hear Sam’s voice and see Frodo’s weariness again. I love that section of that movie.

    The quote from C.S. Lewis resonated. How quick I am to settle for a subtle improvement on my rundown cottage, when really what God is doing, is creating a castle. Something so much bigger and more grand than I would ever dare envision for myself.

    Loved your post today. 🙂

    • Lois Flowers says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the quotes, Jeanne. Sam is my favorite Lord of the Rings character … such an encouraging, supportive, forgiving friend. And wise, too, even though he maybe doesn’t seem so at first. 🙂 Have a wonderful day!

  12. Ashlee' says:

    Hi Louis! Thanks for the wonderful post. Coming to you from the linkup at Purposeful Faith!

  13. Kim says:

    Once again, I text my daughter right away and tell her to read today’s blog from Lois!!
    Thank you Lois giving words that need to be read a few states away!

    • Lois Flowers says:

      Your words brought a smile to my face this morning, Kim! Maybe the two of you should put watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy on your summer mother-daughter to-do list. 🙂 I loved seeing you this past week …

  14. Linda Stoll says:

    Those gift-wrapped beauties? What a lovely start to the day. I want to unwrap them all.

    There’s nothing like reading something that you could swear came from your own heart, your own lips. I just posted a quote from Adam McHugh’s new book The Listening Life, which, by the way, is truly incredible.

    I tucked it in the comment section of my blog. It best represents how I feel about listening well and who I want to be as a blogger, a family member, a counselor, a friend.

    Thanks for talking about this today, Lois. It resonated …

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