The proverb in verse 12 about hope deferred can be linked to verse 11 concerning gathering money little by little. I have been saving up money for many decades. However, events beyond my control have taken each small pile away. Just recently a medical surgery required the latest small pile. My hope is delayed to the point where now my heart is sickened. Will my longing be fulfilled? I ask as Job did, “What strength do I have, that I should still hope? What prospects, that I should be patient?” (Job 6:11)
Hope is a core state of the soul that is usually based on an expectation of a positive outcome in the future. However, my future is unknown, and so when hope is based on an unknown eventually an unexpected negative outcome changes the base soul state to disappointment and discouragement.
What if hope is not based on the expectation of the unknown future? Hope can be based on God and his love, compassion, and concern for me can’t it? Sure hope is based on the surety of God’s character. “O Lord… you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God. Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me,” so prayed David from the depths of an isolated hole of discouragement. (Psalm 25:4-5, 1)