“I will sing of your salvation” (Ps. 71). We’ve come to Tuesday of Holy Week—we’re almost there! And what are we saying now that we’re almost at the end of our Lenten journey? In the words of today’s psalm, we’re saying, “I will sing of your salvation.”
But when we look at what’s going on in today’s Gospel, it may not come as naturally to sing of salvation. Today’s Gospel opens with Jesus feeling “deeply troubled” and saying to his disciples, “One of you will betray me.” Then comes the identification of Judas as the betrayer…Jesus’ cryptic explanation of his passion…and Peter’s promise to “lay down my life” for his Master.
None of this seems to exactly inspire a song, does it? But it can—and it should! Lent, Holy Week, and Easter are all about salvation. Sometimes our view of salvation is like looking at a blurry photo. We can see what’s there, but we can’t quite make it out in all its intricacy and beauty. We know that God wants to save us, that he wants to offer us salvation, but we tend to think that “saving” means “fixing.”
God wants to save us. Sometimes this means “fixing” us. Sometimes it means that he takes a problem or a challenge away. But more often it means that his saving presence finds us precisely in our problems, challenges, difficult relationships, painful moments, and worries. On a very cosmic scale, salvation came through Jesus’ feeling “deeply troubled” and being betrayed. Likewise, in our lives, our salvation comes through our troubles and difficulties. God does not want us to live in our difficulties forever, but he does want to meet us there and save us there.
Today, as we continue into Holy Week, take a minute to identify a place in your life where God wants to save you. Sit quietly and marvel at the wonder of a God who does not shrink before our pain, but who saves us in it. And sing of his salvation!
Sr. Emily Beata Marsh, FSP, entered the Daughters of St. Paul in 2007 and since then has served in St. Louis, Philadelphia, Boston, Los Angeles, Italy, and Alexandria, VA. She is the National Vocation Directress for the Daughters of St. Paul.