thoughts and observations on the daily readings
Friday of the Fourth Week of Easter
Readings may be found here
In these extraordinary times, most of us are spending a good deal of time at home. What used to be a refuge has become a place of confinement. None too many of us might like to run away from home just now. So it may not be the best moment to meditate on what “home” means. On the other hand, maybe there is no better time.
Today we read from the 14th chapter of the Gospel of John. In this chapter, Jesus is preparing his disciples for His departure - the coming events of His Passion. His address to them is deeply personal and emotional and follows on the foot washing. He repeatedly reassures them of His care for them and His presence with them always. In this opening passage of chapter 14, he uses the image of His Father’s house and the many “dwelling places” there. He assures them that He goes ahead to prepare a place for them. This passage concludes with the very personal “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” Here is the key to understanding the Lord’s meaning – the issue is that He is with them and that they will be with Him. Carpenter though He may be, this is not about building a house, it is about presence and communion where He dwells.
Your house might feel somewhat confining just now. You might be impatient and anxious to be “liberated.” But think back to the start of the crisis. You wanted to be with those you love and that love you. Houses become homes because they become that sacred ground for family life. Whatever the challenges of the moment, our hearts always long for communion and a true home is a dwelling place of love. That is the truth that Jesus speaks to our hearts this day – just as he reassured those disciples with their troubled hearts, He reminds us that He is with us and that we will be with Him.
How did Elvis put it? “Home is where the heart is, and my heart is anywhere you are…”