Jesus gives a confidence building speech to his disciples today. In typical John fashion, there are a lot of words, written in a very circular manner, that can be, if we don't take our time, confusing and/or overwhelming..... Jesus is in God and God is in Jesus and Jesus is in the disciples.....Jesus is going away but will be with the disciples.....They shouldn't be sad, but happy that he is going away to God....Those who love Jesus will follow his word, which aren't his words but Gods, and because they love Jesus and follow his word, God will love them and both Jesus and God will come to them.....The Spirit is coming to them, whom God will send because Jesus asked, and they will know that Jesus is with them when the Spirit comes because the Spirit will remind them of everything Jesus taught them and will teach them anew......(sigh.....breathe).....and then Jesus says "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you....." And then Jesus tells them not to be troubled as what he has given them is different than anything else the world can give....and that the ruler of this world may have power over his human body, that ruler has no real power over him..... (breathe again).
There is just a huge data-dump of thought and theology and prayer and love by Jesus. He knows his time with them is short and he is dropping the mother-load on them (and us) to digest over time. This information overload shows a loving and caring side of Jesus that can build confidence in us to face what each of us must, each and every day, knowing we do not walk alone, unloved, unknown.
One of the hardest things for many is to do the last thing Jesus orders his disciples to do today, for to "Rise, let us be on our way" indicates a change in the scene, a turning of the page, an ending to a part of life's experience. But to live this life Jesus models for us and commands us to dwell within, we all have to face that some chapters end, but that we still must always Rise and be on our way.
Copyright 2010, The Rev. John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.