The Power of Hope with Michelle Nanouche, C.S.B., and Naval Adm. William H. McRaven, BJ ’77, ninth commander of U.S. Special Operations Command


Every Seal knows that … at the darkest time of the mission you must be calm, you must be composed. If you want to change the world you must be your very best at the darkest moments.

If I have learned anything in my time traveling the world it is the power of hope. The power of one person; a Washington, a Lincoln, a Mandela, and even a young girl from Pakistan. One person can change the world by giving people hope.

So If you want to change the world start singing when you are up to your neck in mud.

In Navy Seal training there is a bell … all you have to do to quit is ring the bell. If you want to change the world don’t ever, ever ring the bell!

Respect everyone.

Know that life is not fair and you will fail often. Take some risks, step up when the times are the toughest, face down the bullies, lift up the down trodden and never, ever give up. If you do these thing then the next generation and the generations that follow will live in a world far better than the one we have today.

Naval Adm. William H. McRaven, BJ ’77, ninth commander of U.S.Special Operations Command, Texas Exes Life Member


Published on May 26, 2014

Remarks by Naval Adm. William H. McRaven, BJ ’77, ninth commander of U.S.Special Operations Command, Texas Exes Life Member, and Distinguished Alumnus.


The hope within us all

The apostle Paul prayed for the Roman Christians: “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Romans 15:13, New International Version). The hope to which Paul referred is sourced in God. God, as Holy Spirit, cares for His creation – including you and me – through His bestowals of spiritual good. And we can rely on God’s goodness, which brings us ready help and protection from harm. Giving the reason for his hope, a Bible psalmist sang, “Sovereign Lord, my strong deliverer, you shield my head in the day of battle” (Psalms 140:7, NIV).

Sometimes hope can feel faint, almost undetectable in comparison to a problem. But real hope springing from even a slight recognition of God as divine Spirit, and the always present source of harmony, is a spiritual force, acting much like a lit match in a dark room, or a single star that breaks through a black night. Even a glint of hope placed in Spirit as the source of good has sufficient spiritual power to make music in the heart – to spark courage, illumine faith, and enlighten the path forward.

The Monitor’s founder, Mary Baker Eddy, wrote, “What is the anthem of human life? Has love ceased to moan over the new-made grave, and, looking upward, does it patiently pray for the perpetual springtide wherein no arrow wounds the dove? Human hope and faith should join in nature’s grand harmony, and, if on minor key, make music in the heart” (“Miscellaneous Writings 1883-1896,” p. 330).

To embrace life in hope and faith during hardship, even if on minor key at first, can ignite purpose, renew patience, and rouse humility. And as Spirit, God, is Love, the divine bestower of good – and man is the reflection of all good – everyone can discover the inexhaustible fountain of hope that dwells within us all.



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