May 12, 2018
John 17:9-13…“And now I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one, as we are one.” vs. 11
While we often speak of Jesus living among us in this world, it is also true that we live apart from him. John speaks of Jesus’ absence and the fact that he is no longer in the world. We know what he means–often it feels like we’ve been left on our own. For that reason, John makes sure his readers know that Jesus wants them to be safe while he’s away; in his prayer he asks God to protect them. And his biggest concern is that we might be one, that we would really focus on the relationships that we have with our brothers and sisters in the faith and not allow differences to divide us. This really is a big deal for us as followers of Jesus. There will be times when the vertical dimension of our faith, the relationship we have with God, is obscured and we don’t feel the spiritual certainty that we might desire. In those moments, our horizontal connections, the ones with have with fellow believers, are crucial, and it’s essential that we be at peace with one another. We may not feel the love of God all the time, but it’s disaster when we feel disconnected from our neighbors. No wonder Jesus prayed so fervently that his followers would be one.
Thought for the Day: Why can’t we just get along?