“Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.” ~John 13:1
I don’t understand, Lord.
Since supper started, things haven’t been right. First You washing our feet—though only Peter had the guts to speak up to You about it. Then You saying things like “He who eats My bread has lifted up his heel against me” and “one of you will betray me.”
I mean, what’s up with this?
This was supposed to be it—the coming of Your kingdom. Remember the hosannas, the palm branches and coats spread before you on the dusty road, just a few days ago? The people want You to be our King!
For the twelve of us, You already are.
Worse is Your face. There’s something in Your eyes that makes me want to look away when I meet them. A pain and a terrible, patient sorrow. And yet also love, the love that’s always been there, but somehow now seems rawer and closer to the surface than ever before. But it frightens me—like it holds a message I’m supposed to understand. But I don’t.
Something is coming, all right. Yet I’m starting to fear it isn’t what I want it to be.
We shouted ourselves hoarse the other day, James and I, as You rode into Jerusalem on that stubby-legged little donkey. Our King of Righteousness.
You always did call us Your Sons of Thunder. But we’ve learned from You, been changed by You. Come to better understand.
So why do I feel like I just don’t get it?
The wine cups are emptying now, the bread diminishing to crumbs. Peter gestures to me, and I lean back against You, wishing I could better hear Your heart.
“Who is it, Lord?” We should deal with this supposed betrayer right now. Get it out into the open.
You hand a red-soaked chunk of bread to Judas, and he leaves without a word.
I still don’t get it.
You begin to speak to us again, more freely now, and the others hammer You with questions.
“Lord, where are You going?”
“Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?”
“Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us and not to the world?”
Guess I’m not the only one confused.
And You answer us:
“Where I go, You cannot follow Me now, but you will follow later.”
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life.”
“If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him….the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all I said to you…”
Your words pierce into my heart, and I can’t take my eyes from Your face, though I right now I only really grasp one thing.
“…I am going…”
Why? What in the world are You doing, Lord?
“Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”
But mine is.
Originally posted Spring 2013