Tag Archives: Details

Sunday with John — Surrender

John 11:54 Jesus therefore no longer walked openly among the Jews, but went from there to the region near the wilderness, to a town called Ephraim, and there he stayed with the disciples. 55 Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves. 56 They were looking for Jesus and saying to one another as they stood in the temple, “What do you think? That he will not come to the feast at all?” 57 Now the chief priests and the Pharisees had given orders that if anyone knew where he was, he should let them know, so that they might arrest him. ESV

What is the general theme of the passage?
Passover is the annual “first-month” commemoration for the Jews of God’s provision of redemption for their ancestors.  It’s an affirmation of a communal history but it’s also a time of instruction for the oldest to the youngest to remember and proclaim. “In every generation a man is bound to regard himself as though he personally had gone forth from Egypt.”a   Passover is their personal commemoration of God’s intervention where death passed over His people to give them life free of slavery and the weight of history, to seek purity in their new beginning, from one year to the next.  “Now the “Passover of the Jews” was at hand…They were looking for Jesus and saying to one another as they stood in the temple, What do you think? That he will not come to the feast at all?”  

a Rabbi Gamaliel, Mishnah 116b.  

What does it say about God (or Jesus or the Holy Spirit?)
Jesus has returned to “the region near the wilderness” to complete His last Passover preparation.

What does it say about people?
There’s several amazing details in this story.  They [the people] have come “to purify themselves…they were looking for Jesus” AND they’re talking  to one another about it “as they stood in the temple.” Sometimes even in our ignorance we ask the right question at the right time in the right place: What do you think? That he will not come to the feast at all?”    

Is there truth here for me?
It’s so like God to redefine life in “the region near the wilderness” — an uncultivated, uninhabited, and inhospitable region — a neglected or abandoned area of a garden or town — a position of disfavor, especially in a political contextb — into the place Jesus is prepared to complete the purpose of his last Passover: that my life might be Passed over from death to eternity, Prepared to live now in freedom, my heart changed to desire Purity and finally able to surrender the weight of sin to Jesus, the New Passover, once and for all.

b Oxford Languages definitions

Death Notice

Death Notice

At about 9 a.m. Friday, April 9, my beloved husband of 62 years, Conrad [Ken] Bedient was killed in a motorcycle accident.  At the end of those 62 years with tear filled eyes I can testify that instead of time diminishing our love, we understood the reality of our love more than ever before. I was still his bride.  He loved me with a love that allowed me to become the woman I am today.  Not even death can take that away. I can imagine him standing beside Jesus right now and urging Him to comfort me.  I believe that because that’s  how Ken lived his life of faith.

I am leaning harder on Jesus that I ever knew possible.  I’m trapped by the desperation to avoid any familiar routine because that seems like a denial that my world has caved in and yet sitting here in the midst of no familiar routine is just as bad. Even a simple thing like making the bed, alone, has reduced me to tears.  Every familiar part of life is going to be a reminder that I am now alone.   I just don’t know how to do life right now.

I find myself sitting with my eyes closed a lot, like I’m trying to shut out the world. I’m heartbroken and shaken to the core. I’m never far from tears and my body is shaking most of the time.  Those are the details of my need for your prayers.   Friends and our two daughters are here with me. Their presence is the one blessing that reminds me there is still constancy I can count on.   I am thankful for them.  Please pray for all of us who knew and loved Ken as we try to cope with this unthinkable loss of husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend.