Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Expectations vs Hope

There’s often a thin line between expectations and hope. Sometimes, you even wonder if there’s a difference. I suppose the main difference is time. Hope does not have a timeframe; expectations usually do. Both assume that something will happen. The degree of certainty varies significantly.

A recent Aeon article suggests that there is another difference: When hope is a hindrance. Its subtitle explains why: “For Hannah Arendt, hope is a dangerous barrier to courageous action. In dark times, the miracle that saves the world is to act”. Hope may indeed cause procrastination.

Expectations often cause disappointments because we are less in control (eg, in our lives) than we assume we are. Hope seldom causes such disappointments. This might be another difference.

The previous paragraph may hide yet another difference. Hope has a different worldview than expectations. Hope relies on fate (ie, destiny) and faith. Also see my 2022 blog: Why do we believe in Fate? Hence, the triangle of Faith, Hope & Love. Expectations abstain from fate and/or faith.

I doubt the sequence in the last line (see italic marking) of the following quote: “True faith is never found alone; it is always accompanied by expectation. The man who believes the promises of God expects to see them fulfilled. Where there is no expectation, there is no faith…”.

In my view, the sequence in the quote above is wrong. Its reverse is also wrong. It’s easy having expectations without having faith (eg, death, sunrise, taxes). Moreover, most of our expectations do not even involve faith; just time. Hence, I prefer Catherine Booth’s quote below.

“Faith is inseparable from expectations. Where there is real faith, there is always expectation.”

A quote by the “Mother of the Salvation Army” Catherine Booth (1829-1890)

Yah Mo B There (1983) by James Ingram and Michael McDonald
artist-JI, artist-MM, lyrics, video, Wiki-JI, Wiki-MM, Wiki-song

[Verse 1: James Ingram]
Heavenly Father watchin’ us fall
We take from each other and give nothing at all
Well, it’s a doggone shame but never too late for change
So if your luck runs low, just reach out and call His name
His name

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless in quotes or stated otherwise.


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