John 13:1-17

What would you do if you knew that within hours agonizing suffering would smash into your world?

Betrayal of an intimate relationship.

Horrifying pain


Public scorn


A bloody beating



Have you walked that path?  The path of suffering?

It is the path to the Cross.

In those last days before the end, Jesus knew what was ahead... all of it. Yet instead of curling up in a ball of defeat and fear, He pushed Himself back from the supper table, set aside all that defined Him, and poured grace and beauty over His disciples.

Now, I know what you’re saying:

Well, He was God.  He was different.  He was heroic and I’m not. I’m just me— a mess of emotion and mistakes and more fear than I ever thought possible.

And you’re right of course.  Jesus faced His fears knowing He had all the power at His disposal to rescue Himself.

So why didn’t He? Why did He wake up that morning and set His face towards all that horror?

Because He saw your face. He knew about your pain, what you’d have to endure because of the evil rampant in your world.  And He didn’t want you to have to go it alone. Ever.

So He set Himself to suffer- and to die, so that He could carve a path for you to follow in those times of anguished wrongness.  In His compassion, He knows it’s never easy. Yet in His wisdom He left a simple set of truths that light the way lest we wander in hopelessness.

Here are just a few I found in John 13:1-17 where John remembers what happened the night before:

1. Jesus knew who He was.

He knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that He belonged to the Father, that He was made for intimacy with the Father, and that He was headed right back into His Father’s presence.

Do you?

Or are working with the mixed-up notion that this life is meant to be all hunky-dory fairy tale perfect? That this is it, and that your best life is supposed to be now.

2. Jesus didn’t blame anybody.

As He carried Himself from person to person around that emotionally charged table, He actually focused on helping the very men who would abandon Him in just a few hours. Instead of protecting His rights as an individual, His rights as God, He emptied Himself.

Mull over Philippians, chapter two to understand why He chose not to defend Himself instead.

3. Jesus did what needed doing.

In their stressed out state, the disciples overlooked some basic care of each other.  So Jesus set about to do it Himself. His offerings went way beyond anybody’s expectations of His responsibilities.  And He did it so elegantly- no fanfare or drawing attention to Himself.  He simply served.

Do you see something, anything, that somebody needs?

4. Jesus fully entrusted Himself to God.

Humbly, obediently, Jesus submitted Himself fully to God.  No fighting, begging, whining, complaining.  He entered fully into whatever…whenever…however God chose to allow for His life.

As my friend, Becky says, “Give God full creative license to do whatever He chooses with your life.”

Jesus knows your soul’s response to your pain.  He knows and He cares.

And He’s left some footprints for you to follow…

Will you?

You know these things— now do them! That is the path of blessing. John 13:17

From my heart,


For more treasures to grab hold of, read…

Philippians 2

James 1

I Peter 2:21-25