Read and reflect on the following passages each day:
Monday: John 12: 1-11
Love can seem lavish and extraneous but Mary’s actions remind us that love can also keep us present with those whom we love. How can you show people in your life that they are important to you today? What are ways that we can remind ourselves that God loves us all in this same lavish and sacrificial way?
Tuesday: John 20: 20-36
Think of examples from nature or from your own experiences where something (or situation) had to “die” in order for something new to come about. Does the new life make the death any easier? How does knowing that God is still creating and making things new sustain us when we are experiencing all of the big and small “deaths” (losing job, divorce, empty nesters, moving, physical death, loss of independence) of life?
Wednesday: John 13:21-32
This is a difficult passage as it read that Satan entered Judas when he took the bread from Jesus. What does it mean that Judas, as one of Jesus’ disciples, still did not believe in Jesus and betrayed him? Does it change anything that Satan entered Judas? “The devil made him do it”? What do you think about that as a response to harmful behavior?
Thursday: John 13: 1-17,31b-35
To wash the feet of people was to be in the position of a very lowly servant in Jesus’ time. How do Jesus’ actions of foot washing along with the commandment to “love one another” as Jesus loved the disciples and loves us change how we treat other people? How do we truly serve those around us? How does the world know that we are followers of Jesus who came to serve, die and be raised to give us all freedom and eternal life?
Friday: John 18:1-19:42
Trade off reading this long passage or assign parts. Light three candles at the beginning of your devotional time together. After John 18: 27, 19:16 and 19: 42 (the end), extinguish a candle and hold a minute of silent prayer before continuing on in the story. End your devotional time with silence.
Pray for the concerns and celebrations of those gathered. Pray to show lavish love to others, to allow new life to grow, for the wrestling with what we don’t understand, for the world to know God’s love and thanksgiving that God so loved the world that God gave Jesus so that no one is ever separated from God.