2. La coscienza del proprio peccato

For all of us there are times in life when we seem to lose hope, when we look at the world or at ourselves and, consciously or unconsciously, think: “It’s too late! This has gone too far! Nothing can redeem this! All the chances to change this have been used up! It’s hopeless!”

Ron Rolheiser, OMI

We generally confuse hope with either wishful thinking or with natural optimism, both of which have little to do with hope. Wishful thinking has no foundation. Optimism, for its part, is based upon natural temperament and also has little to do with hope. Hope isn’t a wish or a mood; it is a perspective on life that needs to be grounded on a sufficient reality. What is that sufficient reality?

Jim Wallis, a salient figure of Christian hope in our time, says that our hope should not be grounded on what we see on the news of the world each night because that news constantly changes and, on any given night, can be so negative so as to give us little ground for hope. He’s right. Whether the world seems better or worse on a given evening is hardly sufficient cause for us to trust that in the end all will be well.

But there is still another reason for our hope, something else that grounds our hope and gives us sufficient reason to live in trust that eventually all will be well, namely, God’s inexhaustibility. Underneath and beneath, beneath us and beneath our universe, there is a well that nothing exhausts.

And it is this which we so often forget or slim down to the limited size of our own hearts and imaginations: God is a prodigal God, almost unimaginable in the scope of physical creation, a God who has created and is still creating billions upon billions of universes. Moreover, this prodigal God, so beyond our imagination in creativity, is, as has been revealed to us by Jesus, equally unimaginable in patience and mercy. There is never an end to our number of chances. There is no limit to God’s patience. There is nothing that can ever exhaust the divine well.

It’s never too late! God’s creativity and mercy are inexhaustible.

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