Key words: “Disappointment, economic opportunity” – those are the words of Judas’ relationship with Jesus. Judas with his Zealot/revolutionary mindset was likely expecting Jesus to lead the way in confronting Rome. To Judas, Jesus was a ticket for his mental movie of his desired future. When Jesus insisted on suffering instead of conquering, Judas could see that his expectations were clearly not going to be met. So, Judas had no use for Jesus and sold him out to the Romans.
Do we ever use people to reach our desired future? What happens when the future approaches and to our horror, the script of our mental movie departs from our plan? Jesus knew he would betray him, and yet he washed the feet of the very one who would betray him. Jesus included him, loved and served him right up to the point where Judas chose to depart and cash out on his relationship with Jesus.
Key words: “Abandonment betrayal, shame and denial” – those are the words of Peter’s relationship with Jesus. Peter was also expecting Jesus to confront Rome, not give in to their corruption and power. Peter had a mental movie, a script that he expected Jesus to follow. But Jesus was on a different mission. Jesus had been explaining all along that he would;
suffer, be rejected, killed, and will rise after three days (8:31)
be delivered, killed, and will rise after three days (9:30–31)
be delivered, condemned, mocked, flogged, killed, and will rise after three days (10:33–34).
When Peter heard this disappointing, shocking and unacceptable words of the script that Jesus was operating from, he rebuked Jesus. Why would he do that? Because the script of Peter’s mental movie included a victorious confrontation with Roman corruption and power, not defeat and succumbing to it.
Key words: “Divorce, alienation, separation, isolation, broken family” – those are often our words of our relational realities with family members. It is difficult when family members don’t share our values, our priorities, our worldview – or our mental movie of how things should go. How do we respond when we are faced with these kinds of disappointments without communicating that they are a disappointment? Love. Grace. Like Jesus.
Key words: “Acceptance, love, patience” – those are the words of Jesus’ relational realities with us. We are the ones that wander off – and He patiently waits. We operate on a completely wrong script, aiming for, pursuing and loving things and that are off script (seeking our comfort over His kingdom) – and he patiently loves us and waits for us to return to the joy of being fully loved and accepted by Him. Like the father of the prodigal son. He lovingly awaits your return.
What is the script of your mental movie with your family? How is it supposed to go? What do you do when it doesn’t go according to your (controlled) script? When they repeatedly show that they are not on the same page as you. When they don’t see the current political scene the way you do. When they adopt a questionable approach to faith – or just give it up entirely. When they align with social groups that are unbiblical. Will you patiently stand by their side and love them, even though you receive no love in return?
Being like Jesus in this regard – with family – is really hard. But he has experienced these things so He can relate to us: “For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted” (Heb. 2:18).
Draw close to Him and allow His love to extend to those around you.