Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23
Jesus Keeps His Promises
We all have friends. We have people in our lives whom we love, respect, count on, challenge and are challenged by them in return. It is hard for us to say goodbye to a good friend who is moving away, a son/daughter going away to college 400 miles away, a spouse called to active duty in Afghanistan, or a best friend who dies. We always do the ‘promise’ thing, "I’ll write you often, maybe I will visit in a couple months when you get settled, let’s keep in touch on Facebook, etc." It’s hard to see someone we care about take leave from us.
Jesus and his friends were no different than us. Jesus was well aware of the fact that there would come a time when they would have to say goodbye. The apostles, like many of us, knew deep down that this was going to happen, but they didn’t really understand it and tried not to dwell on it. Jesus began to prepare them for his departure as early as the last supper. When it came right down to it, they were utterly devastated at the loss of their messiah, teacher and friend.
Jesus promised all of us that he would never leave us alone, he promised to send an Advocate, the Holy Spirit who ‘will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you.’ His message is a simple one, it calls us to be peaceful in mind and heart, to love as he loves and to trust in the promises he has made to us. Life is messy and Jesus never said it would be easy to be his disciples. What he did promise was that he would not leave us to do it all by ourselves.
In our first reading from the Acts of the Apostles we find further testimony and hope that Jesus was with the early church leaders as they endured their share of growing pains and chaos. The church of today continues to experience some of those same growing pains. Those who have gone before us in faith give us hope that our resurrected Jesus is still leading us, loving us, challenging us, but most importantly, holding true to his promise by walking the journey with us.
Jesus has risen just as he promised! May we continue to walk together in faith as resurrection people!
Teresa Secord is the Pastoral Associate at St Agnes Parish in Louisville, Kentucky.