16 May Peek-a-boo, Jesus Style
Based on the reading for today: John 16:16-24)
It’s always amazing to me how blind we all are in the Moment. None of us understands the importance or the unimportance of what is right in front of us until later. I think that it’s very humanizing that John gives us this glimpse backstage, watching on as the Apostles are completely lost. They don’t seem to have a clue. Just wondering about themselves, trying to glean what we see coming because of hindsight, am I right? Here is the New-born Living Church, and they haven’t even opened their eyes yet, they can’t hold their heads up, and Christ is playing Peek-a-boo.
This passage reminds me of the first time I played that little game with my son. He was laying in my lap, and we were having fun. I lifted up the blanket. Almost immediately, he stopped laughing, and a couple seconds later, he whimpered, and I dropped the blanket and said “Peek a boo!” and all was well again. but that first split second before he registered that I was there again, he looked so sad. Like I had abandoned him.
I didn’t play that game with him for a long time. It broke my heart. I was right there, and my kid thought I had abandoned him. There wasn’t any reason for him to feel that way, he just didn’t know better. The Apostles didn’t know better. that blanket when up and they were devastated. We’re lucky, though.
That’s what the Apostles were about to go through and Jesus was there trying to let them know he was going up and to the other side of the blanket where they couldn’t see him. He was telling them that the blanket isn’t going to be in the way for long. That he was still there. They would see him soon. They were just wondering why Jesus was so concerned with his dad.
Put yourselves in their shoes. They have been through a lot. Their Rabbi, Their leader, and teacher. Their Best Friend was arrested in the dead of night. He was Tortured, Ridiculed, drug all over town. then killed as an enemy of the state. Then the dude has the audacity to pop up like nothing damned well happened and asked them for a PB&J and started right back to teaching. Of course, because it is Jesus, there’s a lot of Riddles and vague speech. then he lays this on them and they are, of course, lost. ” Oh, I Guess Joseph is in town! Must going to meet him for lunch at that new Falafel stand!” that’s what we’d think. OH! Dad’s in town, and he’s meeting him for lunch.
But Jesus doesn’t let it go. ” Dudes, I’m going. Y’all are gonna miss me… But the rest of the world’s gonna love it.”We do. We do because we can see Christ in the people we meet every day if we work at it. I mean, Jesus wasn’t so great. He was dirty, always walking around saying crazy things that irritate the people in charge. he didn’t hang out int he most popular parts of town, or in the right cliques. He hung out with the thieves and hookers. the corrupt and the shameful. he attacked the merchants and bankers inside the temple gates! Argued and condemned the priests and lawyers. He wasn’t about that scene. He wasn’t about the best and the brightest. He was about us. And the rest of these insufferably ignorant and blind humans who didn’t get it, even when Jesus was beating them over the head with it and because of them, we know we’re okay.
We get to see Jesus whenever w can quiet our own selves enough to lift the corner of the blanket to find him. We got a leg up on the Apostles in that regard. We know what Jesus said is true. We’ve read the last chapter already. Metaphorically, at least, we know where He’s going. I mean, if you have read the last chapter of the last book of the bible, I’m honestly impressed. Remember all this when you’re out there int eh world. Jesus is out there, and he’s playing peekaboo. We just got to have the patience to lift up the blanket and when we see him? Smile. Peekaboo! I see you, too