Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Hope, the flower of faith

The greatest trial of life is death, the fact that we will die. A year ago yesterday my Dad went to the hospital. Next Tuesday is the first anniversary of his death. Indeed, death is the biggest obstacle to hope, which is certainty about our future. Death is a horizon we cannot see beyond with our own eyes. So, we must believe in a promise. The question becomes, therefore, is the One who makes the promise reliable? We can give all kinds of eloquent answers about God's trustworthiness, but in order to really believe the promise we have to experience the reliability of One who makes it. This experience has to happen in the here-and-now. Only in this way is faith, from which hope is borne, reasonable.

What is this certainty about our future beyond death, where we fully realize our destiny? For the Christian, for the one who has faith in Jesus Christ, it is a certainty verified through experience. Christ's resurrection overcomes what would otherwise be the biggest obstacle to hope. Giussani emphatically states that "from the moment Christ rose from the dead" we have "nothing more to fear from death". Certainty about the future, about the realization of our destiny, is demonstrated by Christian martyrs. In other words, this "intensity of hope" is so "far reaching" that some "desire to die for Christ".

Let us live for Christ in the same hope come what may, even unto death.


  1. As anniversaries come, we often experience, in some ways, that journey again with our loved one. It is sacramental because it does make Jesus present in a special way.

    My experience with anniversaries such as these has been that hope is present in a much more tangible way to me. While sadness is present, i have found that hope is easier to grasp, easier to feel its presence. Perhaps because we are not physically in the moment anymore. I dunno. Just a thought.

  2. Thanks, Dan. Exactly. I would never try to describe it, but a few nights ago something happened in me, it just gave way. It has been amazing.

  3. When I think of the process of verifying I think of the exhortation that we always have a reason for the hope that is in us...


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