Week beginning Sunday 17th October
We are fast approaching the point in the story when Jesus’ love is going to be tested to the limit. So the Gospel story starts to become much more explicit about love and its consequences.
Read the stories this week, but also be prepared for some practical outcomes. How might God be challenging you to show love in the circumstances you encounter?
Love is not theory; it is a practical subject in the curriculum of Christian Discipleship.
v 2. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?
Over the years, Jill and I have been happy to share our home with a variety of different people. Family and friends have come for holidays or just to visit us, people in need of a home have stayed for longer – sometimes months; and then there was the time when we took in a man fresh from prison only to discover later he had been inside for GBH….. The only thing they all had in common was that they were visitors – even if they stayed quite a while. We got a room ready, made them as welcome as we could, but did expect them to be on their way eventually. Some of you may have welcomed lodgers into your home, and they have stayed on a more or less permanent basis.
Jesus is talking about something quite different!
Love is ready to take us in as permanent members of the heavenly family. Jesus pictures Himself as leaving the disciples behind on earth as He returns to the heavenly realms, and there getting a permanent place ready for the rest of His family. Because He loves you, that is your destiny. Your past doesn’t matter one jot, He has a place for the gentlest saint and the repentant ex-con.
To be frank – I find it utterly impossible to conceive of the arrangements Jesus is making! All I do know is that ‘There is more than enough room in my Father’s home.’ No pressure on space then!
Once again however the disciples aren’t really listening! This time it is Thomas who is immediately worried and questions Jesus. ‘ “We have no idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?” ‘ Worry- worry – worry. Don’t get too hung up about the detail of eternity, Jesus is sorting it!