Monday: Jesus Gathers Strength
“Continue your loving kindness to those who know you, and your favor to those who are true of heart.”
These are words from our psalm for today, and they are words about you.
“Those who know you,” and “those who are true of heart.” Those are words about anyone who is faithfully reaching out to God, but they are particularly true of anyone who made it to church on Monday of Holy Week.
For some of you, attending church every day of Holy Week may be a long-established practice that is a cornerstone of your faith life.
For others, it may be the first year you’ve tried to do it, and don’t worry, Jesus loves you even if you don’t make it to every service!
But what is common to everyone in this room is that you have set aside this time to say, “What happens this week is important. What Jesus is doing in these days matters to me. And I am willing to be open to the intensity of sharing with him the last week of his life.”
That is a bold spiritual commitment, and I’m so glad we’re making it together.
I’m so glad we’re taking this journey as a community.
Frankly I doubt any of us could make it to Sunday if we tried to do it alone.
These are the days in which the world is changed, and we survive them by living together as a Body, supporting and upholding each other as we struggle to face the reality of what will happen on Friday.
This is what Jesus is facing as well.
He has returned to the little house in Bethany, where he can spend some time with his oldest and dearest friends.
He, too, is gathering strength from his community.
He may not know exactly how quickly his death is approaching, but he can feel the noose beginning to tighten.
Just yesterday the crowds surged around him in adulation, but it was only a cover for the forces of darkness that are gathering around him.
And so he goes to his friends, Mary, Martha and Lazarus.
Did they know this was goodbye? Continue reading