Wednesday Thursday

BETRAYAL

Read: John 13:21-35

John shifts us from establishing Jesus’ arrival, authority, and attributes to more intimate conversations among Jesus’ closest circle.

Last fall during ethics week on campus, two men told their stories of betrayal—of their company, of their family’s trust, of their own conscious—in one case amounting to nearly eight million dollars.

At tonight’s conversation, Jesus already know the betrayal underway, and is not surprised or angry about the betrayal in Judas’ or our own heart, regardless of the destruction we reek. Jesus’ lesson is a balm that Judas ran from, but Peter embraced—a love so extraordinary that it defines us, restores us to be disciples.

Prayer: Jesus, how gracious you are even when we betray you. Thank you for your defining love that restores us if we simply turn to you. Forgive us, and teach us to love in the midst of betrayal. Amen

[photo devotional: “Love, Hightide and Low” ]

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SERVICE

Read: John 13:1-17

Before the garbage trucks rolled through at dawn, the director of what would be a 650-seat breakfast on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day was onsite adding name-tags to the tables. She, the mayor and three university presidents, then served the breakfast buffet to young and old, every ethnicity, students and professionals coming to have conversations that mattered, and they came hungry for what would feed their soul as well.

Jesus sits down at the table with his followers, imperfect as they were, and with gracious confidence shows them—holy hands on filthy feet—how he expects them to use the power coming at Pentecost to extend hospitality, grace, and dignity to those with dirty feet, even Judas. Even Judas. (Reading this conversation chronologically makes it more remarkable since Jesus knew Judas’ heart and STILL washed his feet)

Prayer: Jesus, how remarkable to see the God of All gently wash away the filth of our feet, turning legitimate power and position into gentle service to each person. Teach us to serve hospitably. Amen.

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