As this Thursday of Holy Week winds down all I can think about is the evening Christ spent with his disciples, serving them and teaching them one last time before the events that unfold Good Friday.
I am always ALWAYS drawn back to John chapter 17. Jesus begins to pray for his disciples, blessing their coming ministry, praying over them all the things they would need to be effective representatives of him after he was gone, power, authority, protection, love, grace, joy! Here's the coolest part: in verse 20-23 Jesus brings you and I into this prayer, this blessing. He says "I ask not only on behalf of these [the disciples], but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word [thats us!], that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they [the disciples and all who come after them as believers] also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me..." (20,21)
It blows my mind to know that with everything he knew was coming, with everything he knew he was about to face, Christ prayed for ME, for YOU. To know that he prayed for an indwelling of his presence and power in my life so that my life would point to God the way his did is incredible, it's humbling. It reminds me every Easter that this story is about more than just his sacrifice, and that he was thinking about more than just his sacrifice, this story is about his expectation of what we do with his sacrifice. And according to his prayer for us he expects us to do something that will take power, protection, love, grace, joy and the literal indwelling of him in us.
I pray we're all living up to that expectation.