May 13, 2018
John 17:11-17…“I am not asking you to take them out of the world, but I ask you to protect them from the evil one.” vs. 15
In his High Priestly prayer, Jesus expresses concern for his disciples; he’s going to be leaving them behind and he wants them to be safe. Even though he knows that God loves the world, there’s also a sense that the world can be a dangerous place. Most of us know what he meant. There’s a lot of stuff going on all around us as we do our best to stay on the Jesus Way, and some of it is distracting and confusing. We can easily be diverted by politics and culture, and we can quickly be led to embrace that which is hateful and immoral. Every day we see people abandoning the simple truths of Jesus for the sake of money, sex, or power. In that atmosphere, it’s tempting to simply abandon the world and retreat into some form of asceticism or extreme piety–but that’s not the answer either. The best alternative for us is to focus more clearly on Jesus’ radical teachings and trust that the Spirit will make us holy–even in the face of multiple temptations. God has not abandoned us, nor has God stopped loving the world. With prayer and discernment, we can find our way and live safely under the protection of God’s Holy Spirit, even in this decidedly unholy world!
Thought for the Day: What temptations do I find most beguiling?