Reflection on the Gospel of John 14:15-21: Sixth Sunday of Easter, May 14 2023

The Gospel of John 14:15-21

Jesus said, ”If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you. ”I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you. In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them.”

Let us Pray: O God, your Son remained with his disciples after his resurrection, teaching them to love all people as neighbors. As his disciples in this age, we pray on behalf of all people, and those whom we share it. This we pray in Jesus Name. Amen

Reflection on John 14:15-21d How do you think you would have reacted if you were sitting at the table with Jesus’ disciples as Jesus gave his farewell message? There are many today that faced that same message, that they will be orphaned because of the virus.  How do we continue to comfort these victims? They are the ones that are lost and desperate. Have we given them enough support, many were young children who are now still lost. Jesus told his disciples they would never be orphaned, a good thing because not sure they would have been able to manage on their own or how many of us would be able to handle it on our own. At this point Jesus told them he was going to send them an advocate, an advocate who would never leave them. The words “I will not ever leave you orphaned” still speak directly today to some of our greatest fears and challenges, abandonment and isolation, loneliness, and vulnerability. Can we be an advocate for those who left orphans or those who are in despair and full of questions such as what will I do now, where will I go, what is going to happen, who will nurture me and stand with me? These are some of the same thoughts going through the disciple’s heads. This is when the church at its best can be a community of love, that love gives the church a great power by becoming a community of love to provide support so desperately needed. The community where the advocate is present provides solace for those who need an advocate. And that advocate is Jesus, the advocate of the Spirit of truth, the Spirit of Jesus, and the Spirit of God. For us we may not see or hear the presence of God all the time. But the power and presence of God is always available for us. No matter how frightened or alone we feel, no matter how much we feel abandoned or how weak or powerless we believe we are, that does not mean the Spirit is not here. That does not mean we are not loved. We may feel separated from God, but God does not go anywhere. God is always with us, even when all we can see ahead of us is loneliness and despair. God protects and provides for us. We are God’s treasured possession. We are God’s children, brothers, and sisters of Christ Jesus. We are friends of Jesus. Jesus promised He will never leave us orphaned. He promised to be with us always through the presence of the Holy Spirit. And if we keep His commandments and we live out these commandments of loving God with all we are and loving our neighbors as ourselves, that is the proof of our love for Christ. It is not simply saying we love Him. It is doing what He told us to do. That is the measure of our faithfulness and of our love for Jesus. It is because of love for the Father and for us that Jesus embraced the mystery of the cross. It is because of our love for God that we are enabled to endure the sufferings of life. For we know that this life will pass away, but our love of life in Christ will live forever.

Let us Pray: God of heaven and earth, companion in life, Spirit of truth, to you alone we turn our eyes and lift our hearts. Help us to keep your commandments and to love one another as you love us. This we pray in Jesus Name. Amen

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