Wednesday in Holy Week

by Judy Cope

Psalm 69:7-15, 22-23
Isaiah 50:4-9a
Hebrews 9:11-15, 24-28
John 13:21-35

In today’s readings, three great men are suffering: King David (who is most probably the author of the psalm), Isaiah and Jesus. They have been betrayed, scorned, spit at and shamed for the Lord’s sake. Yet they confess confidence in God’s presence and seek refuge in his love.

The beauty of these Scriptures seems to tear down our childhood dream of good things happening to good people. These three righteous holy men with wisdom beyond most human beings’ had bad things happen to them. Jesus was even perfect — unblemished as the Scriptures document — yet horrible things happened to him.

Very rarely in our day-to-day lives are we scorned for the Lord’s sake, but rather challenged in very simple ways to assume an attitude.

Let us reread John 13:34-35. Can you imagine if we could really accept one another in this manner? In very simple ways we could make excuses for our brothers and sisters such as “forgive them Lord for they know not what they are doing.” It is quite relevant that Jesus mentions this when he is about to be crucified. More than likely, he is not talking about loving just your friends and family, but about loving your enemies.

The reading may also suggest that it is good for us to love because carrying around angry hearts can be a very heavy load. Our attitude is a choice, and it is the only thing that separates us from hypocrites.

King David and Isaiah reminded us that the Lord is our refuge. It must have been difficult because even they had the need to write these verses.