Read: “When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. And he said to them, ‘I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer’” (Luke 22:14-15, NIV).
Think About It: That spoken word lingered in the air like the sickening stench of sulfur. Words just couldn’t come together to express what was in her mind in how to respond. The very sound of it was more than the punch in the gut she initially expected. The quick pace of her mind to play awful tricks fast-forwarded her from the exam room to the grave. She was scared. Tears streamed down her broken face. She felt alone. Perhaps it wasn’t even the word the doctor had spoken that was the worst of it. She had already encountered disappointment in life on so many levels. Did anyone really care? Was this dark tunnel hers to navigate alone? The fear of both were more gripping than she had expected. It was more than she could handle. The cloud, however, began to lift as she soon discovered that this was not a road she would journey in isolation. She found the road full of travelers that had joined the journey just to be near her. The lies and deceit that had been repeated over in her mind had been silenced by the deafening, yet inviting sounds of love, unity, and family. She was facing something only she could face, but she would face it with the love of people willing to link with her arm in arm. She was secure.
Going Deeper: Luke 22 recounts the night of Jesus’ betrayal. There would be great confusion as the soldiers would take Him into custody for an illegally held trial that would involve much mockery, humiliation, and suffering. For now, on this night, and at this time, Jesus was with the ones He trusted the most. Though His eventual betrayer was among them, those Jesus had grown closest to in the time He had spent on earth were with Him. Jesus knew that His moment to engage in the purpose God had called Him to was near. He recognized it would involve a sorrow greater than He had ever known. What was His response? He didn’t give into the fear that most would have expected. He wasn’t anxious. He didn’t endeavor to run away. Rather, He immersed Himself in the intimacy of the community around Him. If it was His destiny to encounter the most gruesome suffering of His life on earth, He longed to spend those last moments with friends around Him that had loved Him. Jesus reclined at the table. He leaned back. He relaxed. He was safe. There was a security in the community of those who were focused on the love of God.
Next Step: There are people in the hundred millions that frequent churches every week, yet so many feel all alone. You were not called to church as much as you have been called to be the Church. God knows what you need and who you need. Not only may you need someone to come alongside you right now, but someone else may be needing you. Take a look at the calendar, grab your phone, make a call and schedule a time to get together with someone. Ask God to guide you as you make that call. God will cross your path with those that need you and with those He knows you need. There is security in relationship when the love of God is present.