Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Making Preparations

 Every day he was teaching in the temple, and at night he would go out and spend the night on the Mount of Olives, as it was called. And all the people would get up early in the morning to listen to him in the temple.
Now the festival of Unleavened Bread, which is called the Passover, was near. The chief priests and the scribes were looking for a way to put Jesus to death, for they were afraid of the people.
 Then Satan entered into Judas called Iscariot, who was one of the twelve; he went away and conferred with the chief priests and officers of the temple police about how he might betray him to them. They were greatly pleased and agreed to give him money. So he consented and began to look for an opportunity to betray him to them when no crowd was present.
 Then came the day of Unleavened Bread, on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. So Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, ‘Go and prepare the Passover meal for us that we may eat it.’ They asked him, ‘Where do you want us to make preparations for it?’ ‘Listen,’ he said to them, ‘when you have entered the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you; follow him into the house he enters and say to the owner of the house, “The teacher asks you, ‘Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ ” He will show you a large room upstairs, already furnished. Make preparations for us there.’ So they went and found everything as he had told them; and they prepared the Passover meal. Luke 21:37-22:13

I was making final preparations for General Convention, packing all the materials and clothes for the epic event. I thought about packing for all those journeys when I was a child. My Dad had an old military trunk that we were each allowed a fraction of. We were expected to fit our essentials into a small square, and make do with what we had. That meant keeping clean and/or washing things out at night and wearing them again. I usually had to wash things out at night and go around in dampish clothes the next day. By the end of our voyages, I think I might had sprouted mold, or at least smelled a good bit musty.

Jesus is awaiting the dramatic culmination of all his ministry. He went to the people during the day and to the Mount of Olives at night. The political conniving was intense, and the temple crackle with deception and betrayal. In the midst of these swirling and very tense days, Jesus takes time to help his disciples prepare for their final moments together. God in the midst of human chaos, finds ways for us to live the moments and celebrations that our hearts and minds desire. The living God, standing among us is tending to the details we are panicked about.

Today I ask God to let me go with an open heart and mind. May we all be prepared enough and undone enough to trust God in the huge decisions and the minor details. May we remember how loved we are and take to celebrate the life we share together.

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