Whatever Happens, Don't Let Go!

20-21 After sunset, he and the Twelve were sitting around the table. During the meal, he said, “I have something hard but important to say to you: One of you is going to hand me over to the conspirators.”
22 They were stunned, and then began to ask, one after another, “It isn’t me, is it, Master?”
23-24 Jesus answered, “The one who hands me over is someone I eat with daily, one who passes me food at the table. In one sense the Son of Man is entering into a way of treachery well-marked by the Scriptures—no surprises here. In another sense that man who turns him in, turns traitor to the Son of Man—better never to have been born than do this!”
25 Then Judas, already turned traitor, said, “It isn’t me, is it, Rabbi?”
Jesus said, “Don’t play games with me, Judas.”

Matthew 26:20-25 The Message

Have you ever wondered why, knowing that Judas was going to betray Christ, the disciples didn't just rip him to shreds? It is hard for us to guess what they were thinking.  They may have been more concerned about the traitor not being them.  They may also have been feeling a little let down.  After all, for some, Christ represented the possibility of overthrowing the oppressive Roman authorities.  They may have been processing fear.  Christ had created some powerful enemies who were determined to exterminate him.  It is also possible that they may not have known about Judas' intentions at the time.  Whatever the reason, it is clear that Judas was allowed to complete his betrayal.  As a result of this action, Judas’ name has been inextricably linked to the transgressions or treachery and disloyalty.  Buried, in all of this however, is the fact that all of the disciples abandoned Jesus (with the possible exception of John). The difference between Judas and the rest was that (the rest) took hold of Christ’s forgiveness and returned.

Falling away happens.  Our relationship with Christ is no exception. Discouragement, fear, hopelessness, failure and disillusionment all creep in and cause indifference or a loss of sensitivity to the Holy Spirit.  As with the disciples, Christ understands and offers a constantly available source of forgiveness.   This allows us the freedom to avoid returning to old habits and coping mechanisms.  Is shame preventing a return?  Christ understands.  Is fear holding you back?  Christ understands.  Is pride presenting an insurmountable barrier?  Christ understands.

As the body of Christ, we are here for each other.  Sharing with others in ways that are vulnerable but real helps us to grab hold of God’s grace so that we don’t have to stay in a place of discouragement and darkness.

If you are alone, the Christmas season can be a time of hopelessness, sadness and despair.  If your feelings persist and you need immediate help, please call 988.  If you need someone to help you through feelings of grief, loss or aloneness please reach out to us at contact@jesuslifts.com.

Merry Christmas friends!

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