So today begins a busy week: one interview today to drive to, then tomorrow on a plane to fly to my second interview on Wednesday. In both cases these are exciting developments (at least exciting for those of us who are unemployed): in both cases they are second interviews, which have not happened to this date (Day 100 of unemployment for those keeping track on Unemployment Bingo).
I have been really trying to prepare for this interviews, reviewing regulations and trying to grasp a part of the industry which I have not previously been involved in. It's good work, as it has focused my mind wonderfully on the (for me) fun side of the industry, not the side it seems like I have to deal with so often, the personal relations/politics/petty tyrants which plague so many companies.
But the odd thing that has been happening around Taigh na Toirdhealbheach Beucail is even as I have been invigorated as I prepare, so has everyone else here. The Ravishing Mrs TB has begun to make plans as if I am going to employed, whether here or far away, and has started planning things as if it is going to happen. Na Clann have discussed with her and myself the possibility of moving, and although they would be sad at leaving family and friends, are somewhat excited about the possibilities that might exist. It's as if a forward energy has moved into the house, giving direction and purpose.
But isn't that what hope does? Brings us out of our despair and feeling that there simply is no purpose to giving us a purpose, a direction, the ability to plan forward and think ahead? One doesn't remember what hope does until one dwells without it for so long.
And the remarkable thing - at least for me - is that this is what the Christian life should be (not the way I seem to live it, but there you go): a life of hope. As Christians, we have the unique hope of the risen Christ, of eternity with God, of the fact that this is the worst things will be. We have hope - a real, risen hope, or as Paul says in Titus 2:13 "...the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ...".
But is also seems to me that is is where we as Christians - let's be fair, I as a Christian - fall down so often: being hopeful. The world craves hope right now: every self-help guru or self-help book or self-esteem laden message is hope - hope that you can be a better person right now. Christians have a better hope: not a hope that we can be better right now or life will be better right now, but that after this life, we have the hope of eternal life with Christ in Heaven, or as Randy Alcorn says, "We were made for a person and a place. Jesus is that person. Heaven is that place."
How can I take the temporal hope I feel right now and make those feelings of action and purpose translate into the same action and purpose for my eternal hope?