What is Hope

Faith, hope and love are the main virtues. Prelest diminishes while gradually attaining them.

The Ladder about Hope

Saint John of Sinai. "The Ladder of Divine Ascent". Step 30.

28. The power of love is in hope, because by it we await the reward of love.

29. Hope is a wealth of hidden riches. Hope is a treasure of assurance of the treasure in store for us.

30. It is a rest from labours; it is the door of love; it is the superannuation of despair; it is an image of what is absent.

31. The failure of hope is the disappearance of love. Toils are bound by it. Labours depend on it. Mercy encircles it.

32. A monk of good hope is a slayer of despondency; with this sword he routs it.

33. Experience of the Lord’s gift engenders hope; he who is without experience remains in doubt.

34. Anger destroys hope, because hope does not disappoint, [6] but a passionate man has no grace. [7]

[6] Romans v, 5.

[7] Or, ‘an angry man is not beautiful’ (Proverbs xi, 25).

The Man did not Hope for God, but then He Came to His Senses

Saint Ignatius (Brianchaninov). "Patericon".

The elders told the following about a certain gardener, who, while cultivating his garden, gave as alms everything he worked out, and kept only what was necessary for subsistence. Subsequently, Satan put a thought into his heart: save up some money for yourself, so that you have for your needs when you grow old or suffer illness. He began to save money and accumulated a pot with coins. After that, he happened to fall ill: his leg began to rot. He spent the accumulated money on doctors, but the doctors could not give him any help. The most experienced doctor visited him and said to him: if you do not dare to cut off your leg, then it will all rot. As a result, a day was appointed for the amputation of the leg. On the night preceding this day, he came to his senses, began to repent of his deed, sigh and cry, saying: “Remember, Lord, the alms that I used to give when I worked in my garden and used the money I earned to serve the sick.” As he was saying this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him and said, “Where is the money you have accumulated? where is your chosen object of hope?” The gardener, realizing then what his sin was, said: “Lord, I have sinned. Forgive me, from now on I will not do it again. Then the angel touched his leg, and it was immediately healed.

The doctor, as it was agreed, came with iron tools to cut off the leg and did not find the gardener at home. To his question: where is the gardener? They told him: from early morning he went to work in the garden. The doctor went into the garden and saw the gardener digging the ground, glorified God, who instantly granted healing from a disease incurable by human means.