John 14:1-16 “Beyond Belief”

Bbelief.png“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father’s house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?”  Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.  If you know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, “Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves. Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If in my name you ask me for anything, I will do it. “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. [NRSV]

Access and Frustration

Jesus shows us two important revelations in the passage.  The first, and more obvious, is about Jesus’s relation to our heavenly father and along with that is our access to God through Jesus. The second is the human side of Jesus, revealing his frustration with his closest followers and allies not understanding or seeing God in their presence.

It is worth exploring Jesus’s frustration with the disciples. (“Show us the Father”?) Do you not believe or do you not understand. It is very human to be frustrated why people are reluctant or hesitant to believe in Jesus. The gift Jesus gives is how he presses through what is to himself obvious to continue explaining until the understand.

This Mother’s Day, we honor all those who have been a mother to us. Some of those are our birth-mother, others are grandmothers or great-grands, some are friends and some are not necessarily beloved, but those who stick with us when all others have left us.

Jesus reveals a mother’s love of working through frustration to make certain the heart and mind connect with God’s heart and mind.

The Core Theme: Access

Not only does Jesus make plain his divine relationship, but he moves beyond simply saying, “I am God” to say, you know me, you have access to me, you are connected to me, and being with me, you are with the heart of God. God is with you now. “Emanuel”

Recalling the angel’s words to Mary when Jesus was promised to her, “his name will be Emanuel” God is with us.

Motherhood can also be both frustrating and accessible.

There is a daily model with life-long practice of wanting your children to understand, know, “get it” so they can make the best choices

And yet, a mother has to allow each child to make their own way, learn from both the good and bad.

Jesus Presses the Disciples to Understand

AND, reminds them that understanding the gateway to pro-active, engaging, faith-walking belief.

A Mother’s hope

is for us to trust God with not only our thoughts but also in our actions

is for us to reflect God’s presence, even when we are failing

is for us to trust God’s power, in our strength and in our weakness

is for us to know the answer, but even more, to test the truths in our choices.

Whatever you ask, In My Name, 

This is not attaching God’s name to our wish list,

it is asking for what is God’s will.

Mom’s learn when to let the brood go on their own, hoping they will fly on the food and practice that has been shared.

Jesus lets disciples go on their own, hoping they will ask for what God seeks to reveal in their lives.

Thank and Praise the mothers who have revealed God’s presence

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