Thursday, April 02, 2015
If this story of Jesus is true, if on a Thursday night just over 2,000 years ago, Jesus ate the Passover feast with his disciples, broke bread with them and drank wine with them, if they went to the garden and Jesus was arrested, if Jesus was crucified, and if, by some unimaginable, unfathomable miracle, Jesus rose from the dead three days later, if this story is true, then this ought to be the most thankful of all Thursdays.
If this story is true, then this also ought to be the saddest of Thursdays because it means that Emmanuel, Jesus, God-with-us, was betrayed by someone he loved and served and whose feet he washed the same night on which he was betrayed. It means that the one who swore he would die with Jesus denied knowing him. It means that the others who followed closely for three years all ran away when their leader was taken.
It means that I am no better, no different, not an exception.
For I too have betrayed the One who loves me most.
I have denied how much I love my Lord and how much Christ means to me.
I have worried what others would think about my commitment to my faith journey with God and because of that concern haven't spoken the truth of what I believe and have experienced.
I have walked away, sometimes run away, when discussions begin about religion and spirituality and faith and God and Christianity and the Bible and how to interpret the Bible and how Christianity relates to other religions.
I have avoided situations where I knew I would be called upon to defend something someone else has said or done in the name of Jesus and against the name of Jesus.
I am no different from those men and women who fled when the trouble started on a Thursday night so many years ago.
But if this story is true, if Jesus knew everything they were going to do and loved them anyway,
if Jesus knew how fickle they would be and washed their feet anyway,
if Jesus could feed them, heal them, talk to them, tell them stories, walk with them,
eat with them, drink with them, and promise not to ever partake of that feast again until
all those who love him are with him again,
if Jesus kept the promise to be with them until the end of their lives,
if Jesus kept the promise to give us the Spirit to lead us and guide us, teach us and empower us,
if Jesus is now before the throne of God's amazing grace praying for us, for you, for me,
if all of that is true, then this is back to being the most thankful of all Thursdays.
It's gonna be a quiet couple of days around here.
Good Friday - the day of the crucifixion and the burial.
Holy Saturday - the day the stone sealed off the tomb.
A lot to ponder. A lot to pray for and through.
Spoiler Alert: SUNDAY IS COMING!!!