Nicholas James Vujicic is an Australian Christian evangelist and motivational speaker born with tetra-amelia syndrome, a rare disorder (called phocomelia) characterized by the absence of arms and legs. He is one of the seven known individuals planet-wide who live with the syndrome.
Nicholas talks about his life struggles with this physical challenges and how he has learned to overcome hopelessness.
By Greg Pierson
One of my proudest accomplishments as a songwriter was to write the song “Hope is Alive.” I wrote it as the title track for an audio-visual production for the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.
It was created to bring awareness to the ministry of Cincinnati’s Catholic inner-city schools. Since then, it has been the title track for The Mother of Christ Gospel Choir CD and the title track for the first Pierson-Young Project CD.
It has truly been a blessing to have the song embraced by so many people. My prayer is that more and more people will be touched by it and grasp the message behind it. I’m thankful and humbled that God has allowed me to be an instrument for such a profound message. Lately I’ve been pondering a few thoughts I would like to share.
The phrase “hope is alive” is not an original thought by me and in some ways, it has become almost common place. Many of us have heard Rev. Jessie Jackson using the phrase “keep hope alive” for years; especially in his run for the Presidency. It has been the theme and message of other songwriters, speech writers, sermons, productions, etc.
However, I want to talk about the message in the context of my universe.
Recently I began taking a hard look at what it means to be an advocate of the hope message in the midst of an environment, culture, and mindset of hopelessness. Is it naïve to continue the hope campaign when everything looks so bleak? Am I wearing rose-colored glasses and just not seeing what everybody else sees? Is it foolish to hope?
On the other hand, if I don’t have hope; then what do I have?
If I don’t have hope then what I have, -is what I see and hear daily from those who have chosen to live without hope or very little of it. I see the bitterness, resentment, anxiety, loss of direction, fear, lack of vision, a disregard for humanity, and probably many other things too numerous to mention.
Most importantly, without hope my personal relationship with my God would take a serious hit. My faith takes a hit. What I also realized was that I have to be a willing participant in hope, not just for me but for others.
“It’s every day we walk these roads unknown. The journey may be long but we never walk alone. My brothers and sisters will walk with me, with God as our guide, hope is, hope is alive!"
from the song, "Hope is Alive”
What does that mean? If I am not part of the hope, I’m part of the hopelessness. God has given me a choice between hope and hopelessness. It is my choice to make and no one can take it from me.
“I call heaven and earth today to witness against you: I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. Choose life, then, that you and your descendants may live.” -Deuteronomy 30:19
That’s a serious proposition. The choice I make determines how I will live my life and how I will treat others as I travel on this life’s journey. In my mind hope accompanies life and life accompanies hope.
My choice for hopelessness cannot be blamed on a group, an ideal, a concept, a person, a religion, or even a political party.
My choice for hope will call for action on my part within my neighborhood, in my family, in my daily dealings with people. It may not mean activism but it will certainly mean compassion without bitterness, judgement, or prejudice. It means that I must seek the deeper truth not just the external talking points. Speaking of talking points I will also need to be mindful of the words that come from my mouth.
"Death and life are in the power of the tongue"
Rev Jackson reminds us to “keep hope alive”; but if we live with hope,
hope keeps us alive.
My conclusion: I’ll choose the hope; it’s my best option!
Hope is, hope is alive,
When the sun shines
or a newborn baby cries,
Hope knows, hope will survive,
hope is, hope is alive