There's a strong tradition of spiritual revival in the deep South as well as many parts of the U.S. that have suffered the apathy that comes from hard times. An economic depression can be spiritually depressing as well, rendering the best in all of us effectively 'asleep at the wheel' and off course. The promise of HOPE is not some new political buzzword engineered in a focus group for the 2008 elections. Hope is what I learned from my parents, teachers, co-workers, community and growing up in church. Hope is what I now teach my own children, and the very promise of America. Hope is why no matter how we may stray, we all come home to the big tent in the end.
A famous story passed down through the generations of traveling ministries that would often set up their Revival Tents in some of the most economically depressed areas of the deep South goes something like this:
A minister was asked, "Why do you keep having revivals when it doesn't last?"
The minister replied, "Why do you keep taking baths?"
Hope is nourishment for the starved soul.