I got a call from an old friend tonight. She was just checking in to see how I was doing, to ask about my family and to find out how I was “doing church” when we can’t gather. I, of course, asked about her and her family and all the beloved in her church. It was so nice to exchange stories and catch up on each other’s lives. I somehow doubt the call would have happened without the Coronavirus and the strange sheltering at home practices that have us all a little off kilter. Something to be thankful for – the connecting with old friends.
Today’s lectionary text is all about a Jesus’ friend who betrayed him (John 3: 21 – 32.) It’s a little hard to tell in the gospel of John if Judas planed ahead to betray Jesus or if Jesus picked him for this terrible deed. The other gospels indicate it is Judas’ decision to betray Jesus. Either way, we have to think about this story in this week. I find it hard to imagine how Jesus must have felt as a close friend betrayed him for money, another even closer friend denied him while he was on trial and the rest of his team ran away. What must it have felt like to be so alone?
In our small worlds where we are shut behind our doors, seemingly alone…, we are not alone. Friends are only a phone call or text away. We can chat online or write a letter if that’s our style. And our Lord is ever close. Even though we might forget our Lord, or worse yet deny him, our Lord has made it clear, he will not leave us.
So as we approach Maundy Thursday, I hope you will venture online for our Maundy Thursday service and be a faithful friend of Jesus. Share his special supper. Go with him to dark Gethsemane and beyond. Stay with him in these very important days. He promises to stay with you.
Peace be with you,
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