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James and John, bodyguards for Jesus

by davesandel on October 16th, 2021

Sunday, October 17, 2021. (today’s lectionary)

James and John, bodyguards for Jesus

Lord, let your mercy be on us, as we place our trust in you.

James and I wrestled our way through childhood. Mom yelled at us to to stop, but we didn’t. One of us needed to win first. We could see that she loved us when we stopped long enough for her to wipe our brows and cluck over us with her Jewish mama’s affectionate protests.

The Lord was pleased to crush him in infirmity. He will give his life as an offering for sin, and the will of the Lord will be accomplished through him.

Jesus talks about losing his life for many, being a servant of all. But one thing we know, is that when we all get to heaven, there will be room on each side for one of us. Mom is trying to get his attention about that. She has been walking with our group for weeks now, cooking for us, getting to know the other women, listening to Mary’s amazing stories about when Jesus was born, and before he was born. The angel came and scared her half to death, but then she caught her breath, regained her composure and said to Gabriel, “May it be done unto me as you have said.” Wow!

The eyes of the Lord are upon those who fear him, upon those who hope for his kindness. Let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and to find grace.

Tomorrow we’ll walk right up to Jesus and ask him. Surely he’ll consider us for his right and left hand men in heaven. We’re strong, we make good bodyguards here and now.

Will he need bodyguards in heaven, though, I wonder? Does he need bodyguards now? All I know is that James and I are strong and loyal. If anything or anyone gets in the way of Jesus, we’ll call fire from heaven down on them. Well, maybe we can’t do that. But we’ll insist that Jesus do it, and we’ll clean up the mess afterward.

He appreciates us, he says so. But more and more Jesus seems to be thinking about something else as we try to get his attention. His hands are skilled and his body is strong, but his mind is always digging down under the surface. What I see as the main event isn’t what’s important to Jesus. He tells us we must be born again. I don’t really know what he means by that. We talk about it when he’s gone off to pray. None of us get it. Not Mom, either.

Although sometimes when Jesus looks at me, I forget everything else. I’m not adulting anymore. I feel like a little kid, and I want to sit down in front of him and just feel him rub my head, hear him love me. I’ve been born, sure, and I’ve grown up. I’m an adult. But he says I need to be born again. I’ll bet if we ask him for the chance to stand beside him on his throne, he’ll say something about being little children first.

And I’ll keep praying to understand what he means.

Whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant. Whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all.

(Isaiah 53, Psalm 33, Hebrews 4, Mark 10)

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