Lord Jesus Christ,
You call us to come
To be with you,
And to bear the cost
Of giving up our false self.
By your Spirit help me
To see you,
To hear your voice,
To follow you in all of life,
In the way of resurrection, in the way of love.
Season of Easter, Week Five
In these last intimate conversations before death and his leaving, Jesus brings into simple focus all that he has been teaching and living with his followers:
God will now be glorified – the power of the lie which has held all of
Creation and humankind in bondage and death since Eden, will be
A new and gracious “order” – the Kingdom of God – will be
ushered in. John 13:31,32
Jesus will be glorified. Rejection, suffering, death, and burial cannot
hold him captive. In his death the powers of evil are conquered,
and he will be known for who he truly is: the beloved Messiah, the
Savior who rescues us from death and all its powers.
In the Acts narrative Simon Peter tells of how Cornelius, a Roman
centurian, and his family came to believe in Jesus, and how
the Holy Spirit “fell upon them” just as the Spirit had fallen
upon him and other followers of Jesus on the day of Pentecost.
God is bringing all people together, breaking down walls of
hate, distrust, division, nationality, gender, and creating a
new people who walk the way “that leads to life.”
The end is in sight: the new heaven and new earth, in which
“the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them; . . .
God himself will be with them; he will wipe every tear from
Death will be no more;
mourning and crying and pain will be no more . . .
And the one . . . seated on the throne says: “See, I am making
all things new.” Revelation 21:1-5
The psalm for this week’s lectionary bursts with praise to God,
And calls all people, and all of creation to sound this praise.
In the interim we are to live into this great and new re-creation. Jesus gives us a simple, but profound instruction:
“Love one another. Just as I have loved you,
You should also love one another.
But this everyone will know that you are my disciples,
If you have love for one another.” John 13:34,35
It is worth reading the gospels, just from the standpoint of noticing how Jesus loves his followers – when they fail, when they fall into the cracks of their small faith, when they have no clue what he is trying to teach them, when they fight about power and who will be the most important among them (even at the last supper), when they fall asleep (even though Jesus has asked them to stay with him, and companion him as he struggles), when they betray and abandon him . . . Throughout the gospel narratives we discover a multitude of ways in which Jesus responds in loving, patient, and helpful ways. In this way he shows us how to love one another – and in so doing to be a witness to the world around us that we are followers of Jesus.
Prayer before reading:
Lord Jesus Christ,
You come to us
On the lake shore of our life
Help me to see you
To be with you
To hear your question: ‘Do you love me?”
To live my answer: “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”
Help me to love as you love, to follow you.
Season of Easter: Week Five
4/22 Monday: John 13:31-34
4/23 Tuesday: John 13:35
4/24 Wednesday: Psalm 148
4/25 Thursday: Acts 11:1-18
4/26 Friday: Revelation 21:1-6
4/27 Saturday: John 13:31-34
4/28 Sunday: John 13:35