Thursday, April 21, 2011

Maundy Thursday

On that day three years ago I didn’t know what to think.  This Jesus, he asked me to follow him.  I never knew it would be like this.  I have seen pain and suffering and yet now I have seen miracles and healing as well.  I have traveled far, in distance and in knowledge. 

That first day by the lake, I don’t know why I said yes.  Something inside of me shifted and I knew I had to go.  I had never seen Jesus before.  Yet there was something so compelling about him.  It was as if an invisible net was trapping me, pulling me forward, forcing me to say yes.  I didn’t even have time to say goodbye to my family.  I knew they would understand.  There is something so forceful about living a life for God.  They would get that.

In the days and months after, I saw so much.  Pain, joy, laughter, tears, but mostly love.  That is the key with Jesus.  His love.  His love for God, for people, and for me.  A simple fisherman.  There was one time on a mountain I saw a glimpse of his love.  There was a flash of dazzling light.  All of the sudden there was Elijah and Moses.  I thought we should build them shelters, but then they were gone.

Another time Jesus called to me on the water.  Stepping out of that boat was the hardest thing I have ever done.  I was so afraid and yet, I trusted Jesus.  I stepped out of that boat and I was walking on water.  When I realized what I was doing, I panicked and started to sink.  Yet there was Jesus, picking me up and carrying me back to the boat.  Jesus is like that.  He picks us up when we sink.  He never gets upset when we are frightened.  He just goes on loving us.

What I don’t understand is that Jesus calls me a rock.  He says that he will build his church on me.  Me.  A simple fisherman.  A man who hasn’t seen much of this world.  A man he says will deny him.  But I would never do that.  I know that Jesus is the Messiah.  The son of God.  I don’t understand what is to come.  But that I know.  He is the son of God.  I could never deny him.  Why would I do that?

And tonight at our Passover meal Jesus surprised us yet again.  After we ate, he got up from the table.  He took off his robe, wrapped a towel around his waist.  Then he poured water into a basin and began to wash our feet and to wipe them with the towel that was tied around him. When he came to me, I asked him if he was going to wash my feet.  He said, "You do not know now what I am doing, but later you will understand." He is my teacher and Lord.  He shouldn’t be washing my feet.  But he said, "Unless I wash you, you have no share with me." When he said that I wanted to be washed completely.  But he said I didn’t need to.  He also said, "Not all of you are clean."  I’m not sure what he meant by that.

After he washed our feet, he put on his robe, and returned to the table, he asked if we knew what he did for us.  He then told us he had set an example for us and that we need to wash one another’s feet.  He says we are to do for one another what he did for us.  I’m not sure I understand.  

Are we to be servants to one another?  I’m not sure I get it.  Yet I want to do what Jesus asks of me.  I want to be more like him.  To love like him.  To heal like him.  To teach like him.  

Jesus then said, "Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me; and as I said to the Jews so now I say to you, `Where I am going, you cannot come.' I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another." 

I don’t understand what he means.  Do you know?  I know he loves us all.  Yet what does he mean about being glorified.

He says he is going to die.  But how can that be so?  He is the Messiah, the Son of God.  When I realized that, my world shifted.  How can he die? 

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