"Just as doubt, despair, and desensitization go together, so do faith, hope, charity, and patience. The latter qualities must be carefully and constantly nurtured, however, whereas doubt and despair, like dandelions, need little encouragement in order to sprout and spread. Alas, despair comes so naturally to the natural man!"
"...viewing life without the prospect of immortality can diminish not only hope but also the sense of personal accountability."
"Nevertheless, because proximate hopes are so vulnerable to irony and the unexpected, there is an increasing and profound sense of existential despair in the world. A grumpy cynicism now pervades politics. Many feel burdened by society's other accumulating anxieties.
Even those who are spiritually secure themselves can sense the chill in the air."
"Much as I lament the gathering storms, there will be some usefulness in them. Events will help to draw fresh attention to God's higher ways..."
"...in this hastened ripening process, let us not be surprised that the tares are looking more like tares all the time."
"Though otherwise a "lively" attribute, hope stands quietly with us at funerals. Our tears are just as wet, but not because of despair. Rather, they are tears of heightened appreciation evoked by poignant separation. Those tears of separation change, ere long, becoming tears of glorious anticipation."
"Real hope inspires quiet Christian service, not flashy public fanaticism."
"...when we are unduly impatient with an omniscient God's timing, we really are suggesting that we know what is best."
"The truly hopeful, for instance, work amid surrounding decay at having strong and happy families."
"We may not be able to fix the whole world, but we can strive to fix what may be amiss in our own families."
"...plow in hope," not looking back..."
"...more loving even while the love of many waxes cold. We are to be more holy, even as the world ripens in iniquity; more courteous and patient in a coarsening and curt world, and to be of strong hearts even when the hearts of others fail them."
"...never mind that the world will become more bipolar as between those who are secular and permissive and those who hold spiritual values."
Elder Neal A. Maxwell
Ensign, November 1998