• feet washing,  John,  lent,  repent

    Day 20 – When Washing Feet, Scrub and Soap

    Jesus replied, “A person who has bathed all over does not need to wash, except for the feet, to be entirely clean. And you disciples are clean.” John 13:10 When I was single, sometimes I skipped showers (this is a difficult confession…), and plopped into bed. After marriage, I probably skipped shower three times at most. My wife would not have me next to her unless I am all washed up. But not one day did I not wash my feet. That is where Suyun draws the line. Our feet gets lot of use. Perhaps more than any other muscles, except for the heart. And it is impossible to keep…

  • gratitude,  greed,  lent

    Day 18 – Leaving The Table

    What is most tragic is how greed blinded Judas to what he had. He desired Mary’s wealth when Mary would have given up her wealth to have Jesus say to her “follow me.” As much as Jesus loved Mary, Jesus did not choose her (or Lazarus) as one of his twelve. Judas was one of the twelve, the inner circle. He had a special and intimate relationship with Jesus. He had Jesus’ heart and ears. He sat with him at the last supper. But as soon as it was night, Judas abandons his special seat because he did not know how special it was. Greed turns our eyes to all…

  • lent,  love,  mother

    Day 17 – Dear Children

    Dear children, I will be with you only a little longer. And as I told the Jewish leaders, you will search for me, but you can’t come where I am going. So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” – John 13:33-35 The last supper with his disciples, and Jesus’ tone is different:, tender,  nurturing, and maternal (I needed a sister in our Life Group leader’s study to point this out).  I have always read it more like a father…

  • lent,  physical,  sex,  spiritual

    Day 14 – Spiritual Life is Physical

    and she anointed Jesus’ feet with it, wiping his feet with her hair. – John 12:3 So it went the first time I saw a Muslim pray — quick, necessary, physical, muttered, striking. Next time I was praying in church — on my knees, immobile, silent before Christ on the Cross — the image of this callisthenic communion with God in the middle of bags of flour kept coming to my mind. – Life of Pi When I was young, I prayed on my knees because Sunday School teachers said your posture shows respect. When I became a teen, I was told that what matters is the heart so I…

  • Judas,  lent,  sin,  traitor

    Day 13 – Slipping into Sin

    But Judas Iscariot, the disciple who would soon betray him, said, “That perfume was worth a year’s wages. It should have been sold and the money given to the poor.”Not that he cared for the poor—he was a thief, and since he was in charge of the disciples’ money, he often stole some for himself. John 12:4-6 Before Judas commits the great sin that earns him the title, “Traitor” and ends him in the lowest part of Dante’s hell, before the devil enters him and pull his strings (as John will narrate), there is Judas putting some pennies into his pockets. Such is the slope of sin. We slip into…

  • end,  judgment,  lent

    Day 12 – Can’t Get It Until The End

    His disciples didn’t understand at the time that this was a fulfillment of prophecy. But after Jesus entered into his glory, they remembered what had happened and realized that these things had been written about him. – John 12:16 John is referring to the triumphal entry, Jesus entering Jerusalem with the news of his resuscitation of Lazarus going before him. They did not see him riding a donkey and the palm branches being laid down by the people as the picture of a prophecy of long ago. They did not get it until the end, until Christ ascended and the story of Christ on earth ended. Of course they could…

  • doubt,  faithfulness,  John,  lent,  Thomas

    Day 8 – Faithful Thomas

    Thomas, nicknamed the Twin said to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go, too—and die with Jesus.” It is too bad for Thomas that he got stuck with a title created to divide the bible into useful, manageable sections. Ever since the section where Thomas says he won’t believe it (resurrection) until he see it himself , Thomas was stuck with “Doubting Thomas.” Readers assume it was what the rest of the disciples called him. It is like a bully’s name-calling that follows the victim through his elementary school. The victim is forever seen in that light. But today we see the faithfulness of Thomas. Where many were weary of going back…

  • friendship,  Jesus,  lent,  trust

    Day 6 – Friend of Jesus

    So the two sisters sent a message to Jesus telling him, “Lord, your dear friend is very sick.” – John 11:3 NLT So how did it feel to be a friend of Jesus? Does it mean you kicked back with Jesus whenever Jesus wanted to leave behind the whole messiah-role and wanted some time for himself? Did Jesus crack more jokes with you? Or did he just nap at your sectional-couch because he was so tired of teaching and what he needed was a quiet companion, where there was no need for talk because both of you understood each other, so much so that even silence was a comforting presence?…