Living in relationship

Over the next few days, I’d like to point out several things from the story of the last week of Jesus, drawing on all four of the Gospels. I’ll try to give enough detail to be helpful. But I’d also suggest that reading these sections this week will be helpful. Matthew, starting in chapter 21. Mark starting in chapter 11. Luke starting in chapter 20. And the whole last half of John, starting in chapter 12.

1. That week, Jesus stayed in conversation with God.

2. That week, Jesus taught clearly and intensely

3. That week, Jesus lived in relationship.

He spent the nights in prayer. He spent the days in teaching. But he spent the evenings in Bethany. With Martha and Mary and Lazarus. With friends. At the house of Simon the leper. I’m guessing that the meals and the conversation were remarkable and normal. As normal as could be with a formerly dead man.

And he spent the breaks with the disciples. There were times when he wasn’t teaching, but sitting with them, walking around, walking to and from Jerusalem.

We often retreat in difficult times. But Jesus, with only a week left, stayed engaged. Because what was core to his whole life was relationship. At that last meal, he told his friends,” If you love me, keep my commands. Here’s my command. That you love one another.” And so he spent his last week with one another.

On Thursday night, the disciples and Jesus sat together for a Passover related meal. Jesus told them that he’d been looking forward to this night.

I mentioned the teaching already. But during that night he modeled relationship, too. He washed the disciples’ feet. He told Peter about the betrayal, but also told him that he would be okay.

And part of that relationship included making arrangements for others, continuing to fulfill his responsibilities.

I love that he tells the disciples where to find the colt. He tells the disciples about the arrangements for the last supper.  From the cross, he makes arrangements for John to take care of Mary.

Advance directives are about living in relationship. Regular meals are about relationship. Taking walks with people that matter to you is relationship.

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  1. Pingback: Love extravagantly. – 300 words a day

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