Today’s scripture reading (Letter to the Hebrews) has a curious concept which is hope being a “sure and steadfast anchor of the soul” and that “we who have taken refuge might be strongly encouraged to seize the hope set before us.” In a commentary on this passage one author suggests that many people are overwhelmed by a chronic low-grade hopelessness. Adrift at sea we tend to grab anything that we think will keep us afloat. But what kind of hope really anchors our soul and not only keeps us from drifting but also gives us peace in a storm and keeps us headed in the right direction with the winds blowing over us but not knocking us over? The passage suggests that if we would “take refuge” in God and Jesus, who are not out of our reach but are “set before us” we are anchored in hope not in despair. Hope keeps us alert, expectant, and confident that we will be cared for (remember the refuge) no matter what life tosses our way. Seize the hope suggests immediacy and full bodied active reaching out and grabbing for dear life to what is in front of us, not in a panic but with joy. It reminds me in a funny way not of boats on the sea but of riding on one of those old fashioned carousals where your sit on a painted horse while the carousal goes round and round (and round and round) and you finally get the courage to just reach out and seize the golden ring. Seize the hope that is set before you. Those of us who find hope in the Way of Jesus are strongly encouraged to seize that hope, take it within, practice it and celebrate it and live into it not so that we are anchored or stuck in our old and worn out ways, but anchored in hope itself and hope leads to life, which is what Jesus calls us to; eternal, ever changing, life. Seize the hope!