Thursday, February 6, 2014

To Whom Can We Go?

When many of his disciples heard it, they said, "This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?" But Jesus, being aware that his disciples were complaining about it, said to them, "Does this offend you? Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending to where he was before? It is the spirit that gives life; the flesh is useless. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. But among you there are some who do not believe." For Jesus knew from the first who were the ones that did not believe, and who was the one that would betray him. And he said, "For this reason I have told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted by the Father."

Because of this many of his disciples turned back and no longer went about with him. So Jesus asked the twelve, "Do you also wish to go away?" Simon Peter answered him, "Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life. We have come to believe and know that you are the Holy One of God." Jesus answered them, "Did I not choose you, the twelve? Yet one of you is a devil." He was speaking of Judas son of Simon Iscariot, for he, though one of the twelve, was going to betray him. John 6:60-71

We have been spending time with our daughters, our granddaughter, Mark's sister and my Mom. Being close to my family, laughing and holding them close, sharing meals and stories, we have renewed our relationships and being to imagine our futures together. Among those you love, one cannot help but ask, "where else would I go, to what other people would I go to?" This trip has deepened relationship and cemented our commitments to being together more often.

The road ahead was getting more challenging. The first heady days for the disciples have now become daily challenges and constant controversy. They would have to decide whether they were committed or not. Peter spoke for them all. They were sticking with Jesus, throwing in their lot with him, committed to following where ever he might take them. Love does not look back but instead looks forward with hope, taking risks and challenges in stride. God's love for us does not look back at our mistakes but invites us deeper in love's direction.

Today I ask God to help me not look back but to look forward with joy. May we be committed to where we have been called, deepening our love and commitment every day. May we grow more in love with the people God has given us, so that the world might know God in our midst.

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