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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Sunday, June 2, 2019              

Today’s Scripture Reading | John 17:20–26

“I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

Father, I desire that those also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory, which you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. “Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.” (NRSV)

Reflection
“As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us . . .”

Huh?

Back when I was a high school teacher, I presided over a freshman homeroom. Our school had a very faithful donor who generously and discreetly helped out students whose families were economically vulnerable. One of these students was in my homeroom, and whenever she received something from this donor, I insisted (cajoled, nagged, badgered) that she write a thank-you note. When she became a sophomore, she would stop by my classroom to visit, and one day she mentioned writing a thank-you note to the donor who had recently done something good for her. When I expressed surprise that she would do this without my nagging, she said, “You told me to.” Responding that I hadn’t seen her for days and didn’t know anything that had happened, she gave me a witheringly adolescent look and said, “In my head.” Duh.

I did all that cajoling because my mother had spent forty-three years doing much the same thing. The people who love us get in our heads and stay there.

The Father loved Jesus that way, and Jesus loved the Twelve that way. Deep love imprints us, makes us different than we were before. Being incorporated into the love that exists between Jesus and the Father allows us to know, genuinely, who we are and what we are to do.

They are in us.

Prayer
Jesus, who prayed with and for your disciples on the eve of your departure from this earth, please do not stop. Pray with and for us. Be in us. May we be one with you and with each other. Always. Amen.

Written by Susan Quaintance, Director, Center for Life and Learning

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