John 14:1, 26-28
Twice in John 14 Jesus tells His disciples, “let not your hearts be troubled.” He also tells them that He is leaving to be with His Father. His disciples are understandably confused – ‘You’re leaving, and we shouldn’t be worried?Our hearts are troubled. Where do we go from here? How do we proceed without our Lord?’
I’m a worrier. I've been a worrier for a long time. When my son was young, he liked to walk in the orchards and look for dandelions. We had a big dog, a Neapolitan Mastiff, (think Fang from the Harry Potter movies.) The dog wasn’t a sheep dog, but he was a working dog, part protector and part pack animal.
Usually my son and I would venture into the dappled light before the sun became strong. We would search the grounds and the heavens for whatever we might find, a rock or birds’ nest, a butterfly or raccoon paw print. To a three-year-old anything is cause for adventure. Sometimes we made up stories about what we found, sometimes we just let the wonder of God seep into our faces.
One day, I was busy. We had built a dog fence, but the dogs had burrowed under it and I was filling holes. My son was near me, I thought, but when I looked up, he wasn’t there. I called. No answer. My heart raced. I looked to the road, where the traffic of trucks and semis seemed too fast and too near and too constant.
I whistled and heard a barking answer.
In the very middle of the orchard, my son and the dog (half a head taller than my son) walked with my son’s hand on the dog's back.
When I finally rounded them up, my son said, “You didn’t need to worry, Momma. We didn’t go near the road and Taz was with me.” He smiled and took my hand.
For a while that day my heart was troubled. It could have been so much worse as many of my friends here know. Evenso, I have learned that not only our great mastiff of a dog was with my son, but God was and is with us. Jesus died that we may always be with Him through the Holy Spirit. He told us not to be troubled, He is with us always.
When I read these passages from John 14, I am renewed. I am reminded that this world is not my home and that I trust God so much more than the traffic on the highway. I know that bad things happen in this world and I dread times of sorrow, but God is with me even then. The Holy Spirit is my comforter and I may find peace in Him even in this ragged world.
May your spring be bright with adventure. May your hearts be light with love, and may the peace of the Holy Spirit dwell deeply within you. Amen.
We closed with, What a Friend We Have in Jesus
Thanks for reading, Bev