John 18:19-27 Meanwhile, the high priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. 

I have spoken openly to the world, “ Jesus replied.   “I always taught in synagogues or at the temple, where all the Jews come together.  I said nothing in secret.  Why question me?  Ask those who heard me.  Surely they know what I said. 

When Jesus said this, one of the officials nearby struck him in the face.  “Is this the way you answer the high priest?”   he demanded.

if I said something wrong,” Jesus replied,  “testify as to what is wrong.  But if I spoke the truth, why did you strike me?”

Then Annas sent him, still bound, to Caiaphas the high priest.

As Simon Peter stood warming himself, he was asked, “You are not one of his disciples, are you?”

He denied it, saying,  “I am not.” 

One of the high priest’s servants, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off, challenged him, “Didn’t I see you with him in the olive grove?”  Again Peter denied it, and at that moment a rooster began to crow.

What stands out to me about this whole awful event is how Jesus is calm and steady in the midst of all the emotions of all the people involved here.

The Jewish leaders are fearful of an uprising of their people against the Roman Empire as we learned about in the video we saw on Sunday.  Jesus is a threat to them and the people that they have authority over.   Why is the truth such a threat to them?  Why don’t they accept Jesus for who he is and believe that the miracles that he performed were real?

Then there was Peter, who followed Jesus.  He left everything to be his disciple and he too gave into his fears.  Was he doubting, Jesus now?  After all that he experienced and witnessed with Jesus, he was letting his fears lead him through this!

Jesus was obedient to God.  He was fulfilling what the prophets foretold, God’s promise of a savior!          He is The Savior!

He knew who he was and what his purpose was.  He just wasn’t what they were all expecting.  He didn’t look or act like they believed he should.  Jesus humbled himself even though he was “The Son of God”!  He didn’t come out announcing who he was; God introduced him after John baptized him saying, “This is my Son, with him I am well pleased”.

What is God saying to me through this?

He is telling me that I need to let go of all of my fears and doubts!  And Trust Him!

Fear is hindering me from completely surrendering my will to Jesus? My doubts are holding me back from being all that he wants me to be and from doing all that he wants me to do!  It’s keeping me from being free to love and live the life that God has planned for me!

But, do I really want my life to change?  Do I want to give up what I have been use to in order to follow Jesus?  Am I clinging to Fear and worry, and letting them guide me through life instead of trusting my Lord and Savior?  These questions haunted me for years and if I let them they keep trying to replant seeds of doubt in my mind.

Just a few years back I was letting my fears, worries and selfish pride control me.  I let them be my excuse for not doing what God wanted me to do.   My outward excuse was that I wasn’t ready, and I had too much to do at home!  I wanted to focus on me for a while.  I helped out some, but my heart wasn’t in it.  Everything was a chore and I felt this great weight of guilt hovering over me!

I also fought self- doubt.   I thought I wasn’t good enough.  No one really wanted to listen to me, or get to know me because I was dumb and boring!  I was afraid of being rejected, or not included!  I let myself sink into depression.  I was afraid of all the ‘what ifs’ in life.   I worried about what might happen to me or my family.

Ugh! I was like the Jewish leaders!  I didn’t want things to change! I wanted to stay in control! I also didn’t want to come out of my comfort zone or to inconvenience myself too much.  Jesus came into my life and I gave my heart to him long ago, but I had gone astray.  My heart had become hard.  I acted like a Christian, but on the inside I felt dead!  All this baggage was weighing my spirit down and keeping me from living!

Thankfully Jesus didn’t let me stay in that dark place.  Little by little he led me back to him and brought me into a new life!  I knew I couldn’t stay in that place.

Out of my great need for God’s love and peace, I prayed, and began to really listen and truly believe that Jesus loved me and wanted me!  Even if no one else did; Jesus did!

If you have similar fears, please, don’t let them lead you through life!

Give it all to Jesus!  He will lead you through the troubles of life, and what ever you are currently going through.  If you let him!  He went through all of it as well as death and resurrection!  And, He can bring you through whatever it is you are facing!

We also have each other when we need encouragement and a helping hand! We are to love and care for each other!  We need to stick together and work together to stay on track with God.  Together we are stronger and better to serve God!

If you are feeling depressed,  Lost and Alone. Please, don’t go through it by yourself!

With the Lord’s help find someone to connect with that you can pray with, and be real with.

Jesus Loves You!  And we your brothers and sisters in Christ, do too!

Dear Jesus, 

Thank you for your love and caring for us.  Help us to let go of our fears and to turn all our troubles over to you.  Help us to believe in you and to trust in you to help us through each and every day that God gives us.  We long to see you and be with you for eternity, but until then help us to do our best to love each other and to serve you by sharing your love with the world around us.  Amen