"Let not your hearts be troubled..."
I woke up thinking to myself, "I need to spend some time with Jesus." I've been reading through the Gospel of John a chapter a day for the past two weeks or so, meaning I arrived at chapter 14 this morning. Verse 1 reads like this: "Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me."
This verse comes on the night Jesus was betrayed, the night he would be arrested, the night where everything the disciples had known and believed over the past two years would be shattered. Their Jesus was going away, and where he was going they could not follow (13:36). They had invested everything in him. What would they do without him? It was going to be the darkest time in their lives.
But still Jesus says to them, "Let not your hearts be troubled." Why? Well, because he says so. And as much as children hate hearing that from their parents, every parent learns the merit of such a reason. They want their children to obey their authority because their authority is legitimate and right and good. But here, it's more like, "trust me." That what Jesus really wants. He wants us to trust him--even in the midst of what feels like his absence.
Today, Hurricane Ida will strike a hard blow to Louisiana's coastline. It will leave destruction and death in its wake. And what the means for those of us who follow Jesus is that now is the time to lean-in to the commandments of God to trust him. Now is the time to remember that he is supremely faithful, that his promises go beyond even death itself.
"Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms. 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, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to 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, the truth, and the life." (14:1-6)
Take care of each other.