This week we have been finishing up the gospel of John in our sixth month New Testament reading journey. One of the things that has stood out to me this time I have read through the gospel of John is how much Jesus seems to struggle. Think about these images of struggle in John’s gospel:
- Chapter 2 – Jesus struggles with his mother: “My hour has not yet come.” (v.4)
- Chapter 2 – Jesus struggles to make the temple pure again: “Stop making my Father’s house a market-place!” (v.16)
- Chapter 5 – Jesus heals on the sabbath and then struggles with the Jews:”Therefore the Jews started persecuting Jesus, because he was doing such things on the sabbath.” (v.16)
- Chapter 7 – Jesus struggles to stay away from the Jews: “He did not wish to go about in Judea because the Jews were looking for an opportunity kill him.” (v.1)
- Chapter 7 – Jesus struggles to get his own brothers to believe in him:”For not even his brothers believed in him.” (v.6)
- Chapter 10 – Jesus struggles with Jews yet again: “I have shown you many good works from the Father. For which of these are you going to stone me?” (v. 32)
- Chapter 11 – Jesus weeps when he saw his friend, Lazarus, had died: “Jesus began to weep.” (v.35)
John does not paint an easy road for Jesus. And Jesus’ pain and struggle stands out more to me in this gospel than in the others.
At first it was a bit uncomfortable to be faced with all of Jesus’ struggles. With time, however, seeing all of Jesus’ pain is somewhat comforting. Not comforting in the sense that it makes me feel better, but comforting in the sense that Jesus is with me in a more powerful way. He was truly human and he experienced the struggles of humanity.
Struggles are a natural part of the human journey. And living a life of faith, does not exclude you from struggle.
Think about the times you have seen people you love suffer…
Think about a time you watched a friend experience the pain of being decieved or betrayed…
Think about the journey with someone through their grief of loosing someone close…
Think about a time you were hurting…
How does it feel to know that Jesus struggled, too?
How did Jesus handle the suffering and pain?
What can we learn from Jesus?
And when we become more aware of Jesus’ humanness, the fact that Jesus suffered through human struggles, we have another way to connect to our Lord. We have a relationship with the Divine who empathizes with us. We can find comfort in the arms of Jesus, who truly has been there too. Although, we can never fully comprehend the depth and breadth of God’s love for us, God understands us through the humanity of his son Jesus.
**For those reading along on in the New Testament–we will begin in the book of Acts next week.
Miss Sunday’s Sermon?
Dumbfounded: God did what? for who? John 15, Acts 10 (Pastor Jason)
This Week at Hood
Tuesday, May 8th, 6:30pm – Circle #2 Meeting in the Fellowship Hall
Wednesday, May 9th, 1:00 pm – Prayer & Inspiration
Wednesday,May 9th, 6:00 pm – Choir practice
Thursday, May 10th, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Pastor Jason at The Cellar for Drop-In Coffee & Conversation (108 N Wilson St)
Thursday, May 10th, 3:00 pm – History Team Meeting
Saturday, May 12th, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm Spring Fling: Home & Garden Show/Bake Sale at Howard House
Sunday, May 13th, 11:00 am – Worship (Remembering the Women of Influence in our lives: bring images of your mother or other women who influenced you and directed you in the way of faith).
Monday, May 14th, 3:00 pm – Circle #1 meeting in the Fellowship Hall
Wednesday, May 16th, 6:00 pm – Love Wins: Kids Mission Night
Wednesday, May 16th, 7:00 pm – Board Meeting
Sunday, May 20th, 11:00 am – Installation & Service of Standing for Revs. Jason & Joanie Williams, Lunch following
June 25, 2018
June 13, 2018
June 12, 2018