We all want hope, but we aren’t always sure how or where to find it.

But what kind of hope do we want? Do we hope to win the lottery? Or to catch the eye of that handsome barista? Maybe to win the lottery or get a promotion at work.

Hope comes in many forms and sometimes doesn’t appear at all.

There was the hope that I’d get a good grade on a test in high school. Never mind that I hadn’t studied or done all my homework. I still hoped for a scholastic miracle. Sometimes, I got my wish, especially if there were multiple choices or essay questions. After all, I am a writer, although I didn’t realize it at the time!

When my first fiancé broke up with me, I hoped he would realize his mistake, change his mind, and come back to me. I learned later that he had every intention of cheating on me and would feel less guilty if we weren’t engaged. That “hope” I had was useless…based on incorrect information. I was relieved later that I hadn’t married the bum.

Many years later, my hope was shattered when my husband was diagnosed with terminal cancer and given less than a year to live. We were both Christians, so I believed God could and possibly would heal Bryan. As his pain increased and his weight decreased, my hope dissolved into nothing. Of course, there was the hope I’d see him again after this life, but I wanted to see him every day, not just at some time in the future.

One definition for hope is “the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best.” Each of those instances above shows hope that what I wanted could be had. I wanted that man back, a good grade, and my husband to be healed. But in fact, all three answers proved the events would turn out for the best.

My first hope was that I’d get a good grade without studying. But getting a lower grade urged me to study harder the next time, which ultimately turned out for the best.

The second hope was to resume a tainted relationship, which could have ruined my life.

The third hope was for more time with my husband. Although I didn’t get that, going through that experience led to writing my first book, which has helped thousands of folks on their cancer journeys.

So, although hoping doesn’t always give us what we want, it sometimes gives something even better. Never give up hope!