How To Keep Faith When Life Seems Hopeless

mbg Contributor By Daniel Dowling
mbg Contributor
Daniel Dowling is a freelance journalist and copywriter based in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

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Karol Wojtyla (Pope John Paul II) said, “We cannot live without love. We remain incomprehensible to ourselves if we do not experience and participate intimately in love."

We need love more than we need the air we breathe. Without it, our lives cease to make sense. We lose touch with our purpose. But sometimes love seems impossible. That's where faith comes in.

The strongest, most inspiring people in history, time and time again, are shown to be the people who choose to love regardless of their circumstances. What gives some people the ability to love where others fail? Faith.

In an interview with a Nazi prison camp survivor, the survivor said:

“I had to decide … whether to let myself hate the soldiers who had done this … I had seen, too often, what hate could do to people’s minds and bodies. Hate had just killed the six people who mattered most to me in the world. I decided then that I would spend the rest of my life, whether it was a few days or many years, loving every person I came into contact with.”

Faith is the decision to love even when you don’t feel God’s presence. Faith is built through the decision to love, no matter the circumstances. The more you choose love, the greater your faith will grow.

Faith is the momentum of love that brings us into a peaceful future. The more faith we have, the easier it becomes to believe we can survive.

It’s easy to lose hope in this upside-down world. You’ve probably asked how a loving God could place so many people in war-torn lands, hostile environments. Love, under these conditions, can seem pointless—even weak. But it's just the opposite.

Love can be difficult. But without it, life is impossible. And in fact, it's a waste of time.

“We cannot live without love. We remain incomprehensible to ourselves if we do not experience and participate intimately in love."

If you ask me, love is our greatest purpose. It’s our highest achievement. And we need faith and hope to live it. Faith is the muscle that enables us to break impossible barriers in order to express and receive love.

No matter how dark the world seems today—no matter how much pain you’ve been through or expect—keep faith. Love like the world depends on it. Don't waste energy on despair. Instead, put it into bolstering your faith.

When you feel you can’t go on, or like you'll never make a difference, just draw on your faith. When you feel oppression so thick it steals the air, breathe faith. A world of peace depends on the love we bring into it. No one can ever rob us of our ability to love.

Here are five ways to keep faith when it seems impossible:

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1. Pray.

Ask God for the strength to love to your full potential. Keep an open dialogue with the source of all love to guide you through your trials.

2. Be generous to others.

Sometimes the greatest strength we can receive comes through helping others in need. (Just ask Mother Teresa.) Love is always there for us to draw upon, and it’s easiest to see when we decide to share it freely with others.

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3. Get inspired.

Let inspiration help you stay connected through faith. Pick up Zig Ziglar’s new audiobook, or listen to a Tony Robbins seminar. Read about the lives of people who’ve demonstrated faith in amazing ways.

4. Surround yourself with people you admire.

We are how we spend our time. So if you want to walk the path of faith, pave it with as many faithful people as you can. Choose friends who refuse to settle in their relationships and careers and who challenge you to love like it’s your last day on earth.

(Finding those types of friends is as hard as hell. It helps to start by focusing on being that kind of friend.)

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5. Get the ball rolling first thing in the morning.

Carve out 10 minutes in the morning to focus on faith.

Faith is the decision to love when it seems impossible. And if you’re anything like me, you sometimes wake up with the weight of the world on your shoulders. Rather than give in and settle for less, set a daily intention to love—no matter how hard it may be.

Meditate on faith, and ask for everything you need to love like crazy—first thing in the morning. That'll start your day with the momentum you need to make even the hardest decisions.

And remember—never settle for less than you deserve—in your jobs, in your relationships, in your challenges to yourself. Always strive for perfection (even when it comes to acceptance of yourself).

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