Tuesday in Holy Week

by Shep Skiff

Each of these passages pulls me to the very basic, wonderful mystery that hope is at the core of existence and the basis of resurrection.

In the Gospel, aware of his imminent nearing death sentence, Jesus freely shares that one cannot earn, strive, or possess hope, it just “is.” Rich or poor, Greek or Hebrew, Jesus came to make clear that humble hope — when paired with love — is the basis of God’s call to us on this earth and the basis for our salvation.

Words and language are verbal metaphors for truths and mysteries alike. And looking at the differing interpretations of the word “hope” is interesting. For Greeks and Hebrews, “hope” has the meaning of a strong and confident expectation. The Indo-European root of the word “hope” relates to the word “curve,” a bend in a different direction. The synthesis of the two definitions — that is, to bend confidently in a different direction, of love — seems to me to be the basis for Jesus’ simple message. The author of our salvation founded a religion, a realignment, grounded in faith in hope, through love. That’s the whole thing!

As for me, I will always have hope; I will praise you more and more. — Psalm 71:14