Isaiah 49:1-6 ● John 13:21-33,36-38
Jesus said, “Children, I am with you for only a short time longer. You are going to look high and low for me. But just as I told the Jews, I’m telling you: ‘Where I go, you are not able to come.’
Simon Peter asked, “Master, just where are you going?”
Jesus answered, “You can’t now follow me where I’m going.
You will follow later.”
“Master,” said Peter, “why can’t I follow now? I’ll lay down my life for you!”
“Really? You’ll lay down your life for me? The truth is that before the rooster crows, you’ll deny me three times.”
Jesus’ close friends are beginning to feel the sadness and grief of their imminent parting and Jesus is trying to prepare them for it. The disciples don’t know how things will unfold, but in John’s gospel, Jesus does. He is rather matter-of-fact about it, even while impetuous and outspoken Peter tries to be brave. Even though Peter’s betrayal will be known and felt throughout all of history, Jesus does not condemn Peter or shame him for it. He simply states an observation about Peter, without any judgment attached.
Are you stuck focusing on someone’s failure, sin, or shortcoming (perhaps your own) with judgment? Pray for the grace to let go of that judgment and replace it with a simple observation, or better yet, compassion.
Reprinted with permission. For more information about this booklet and Bible translation, please see TheMessageCatholic.com.