John 14:1-14 (NRSV)
Chapter 14"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me. Verse 2In my Father's house there are many dwelling places. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? Verse 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, so that where I am, there you may be also.
Verse 4And you know the way to the place where I am going." Verse 5Thomas said to him, "Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?" Verse 6Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. Verse 7If you know me, you will know my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him." Verse 8Philip said to him, "Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied." Verse 9Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Verse 10Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Verse 11Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves.
Verse 12Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. Verse 13I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. Verse 14If in my name you ask me for anything, I will do it.
Facing the cross, Jesus knew the next day was going to be horrible for him and for his disciples. “Do not let your hearts be troubled,” he tells them. Seriously? How could their hearts NOT be troubled? Jesus is talking about something different from sadness, fear, and horror. He is telling them not to lose faith in God and in him, despite what is going to look like a colossal failure. As if to say, “Believe! When you see me on that cross, believe you are seeing God in the flesh. Remember all the signs you have witnessed. Trust that God’s power will not fail. Believe that through my death, I am making a way for you and me and the Father to dwell with one another in true life forever!” It’s hard to keep the faith when the world around us looks bleak and our hearts are burdened with grief, confusion, fear, or rebellion. Jesus reminds me to place my trust in God, not in my own understanding.
Dear Jesus, my heart is often troubled by my own lack of trust that you could love me just as I am. Forgive my pride and ego that fuels my desire to make myself good enough for you. Bring me back to dwell in the way, the truth, and the life that is you. Amen.