John…bent over…knees aching…head throbbing, remained at the foot of the Cross. His mind was whirling with questions. Confused, yet uncommonly loyal to the One he loves. What his eyes beheld could have caused anyone to run away as fast as they could run. Many did. Yet, John remained true.
This brother’s example teaches me about steadfastness. While unanswered questions race through my mind, I want to run away. Where to? No place makes sense. Where were the other disciples ~ the ones who witnessed the same as John ~ where did they go? They pledged their devotion to Jesus too. They slept next to Him beside dusty roads. They ate with Him. They watched Him turn water to wine. Where were they while He paid such penalty for their sins? Where am I, when He’s proven Himself to me in countless ways ~ yet while doubts also plague my mind? John remained true.
Regardless of circumstances, John was steadfast to the end: to Calvary and beyond. How deep a love that is; so deep that I lean in to understand. I press the ink on the pages of scripture to squeeze out revelation. This love that I read about endured darkness, thunder, lightning–even bewilderment of soul. I want–no, I desperately NEED–to know that depth of love and loyalty when I don’t understand what my Lord is doing.
Jesus said to John, “Behold your mother.” If we could talk, I’d ask: ‘What did you feel, John, when the Son of God gave you the care of His beloved mother? His heart must have been deeply grieved to leave her, yet He entrusted her to your care. While kneeling beneath the blood-drenched cross, did you consider that He might also be speaking about us, the Church? Was He entrusting to us that which is precious to Him ~ to love and care for “as Christ loved the Church and gave Himself up for her”?’
Light beam: When Your light shines in my heart, Lord, do you find me bent over in this kind of reverence to You? My knees ache and my head throbs due to weakness of flesh. I have so many unanswered questions. Confusion tries to settle in. Yet, having beheld the Church–I’m forever smitten with love for her…because of You. I need Your light to help me remain a true disciple.