Jesus, today I saw courage in Nazareth wearing jeans and a T-shirt. They were draped on a Messianic Jew drenched in sweat, telling your story in a synagogue. He read your courageous hometown chant, “Today, this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:21). You must have known they would reject you – just like so many in Israel reject the message of the Pastor in jeans who read your words today.
I saw your tenacity today on the rock stairs you skipped on as a boy. It emerged from the enduring steps of my new sweet friend struggling to climb the hill, but determined to walk in your footsteps.
I heard your desperation today to know God the Father and to walk closely with Him. Your heart sounded across the Sea of Galilee through the passionate prayer of a warrior woman declaring truth over each life on our boat.
On the road you walked between Nazareth and the Sea of Galilee I shared a bus seat with a testimony that reminded me just how real you are and that your roads are always right. She followed your footsteps from pain to surrender to glory and joy.
I saw a cross today, just like the one you endured for the joy set before you.
I saw your lovely humility today. It was in a woman who carried a stool to accommodate the pain of a replaced hip. Her resolution to stay with the group, despite the discomfort, and walk in your footsteps reminded me of your “resolute” journey to Jerusalem, to hang in torture. For me.
I saw your unshakable commitment to your Father today. It was in the supper-talk of a woman who will sink into the baptismal waters of the Jordan tomorrow. Between bites she said, “more and more I cannot deny that He is real. I cannot.” Yes, truth is unshakable, and you call yourself truth.
I saw your humour today. In the same way you playfully popped from the sight of your Emmaus comrades, I was duped by the wit of my mischievous new clan of friends- providing comic relief for the whole crew.
I heard you speak mercy today on the Sea of Galilee. Through the storytelling of tour guide tales, you spoke to me saying, “Peter did nothing to earn my saving hand in the water. In fact it was in the very moment he MOST lacked faith that I reached out my hand to meet his need. You need not perform, daughter. I AM more than enough.”
I saw your honour for your Father today. God the Father remained in heaven, but you represented Him with honour on the foreign earth-ground. I saw this today in a red poppy pinned in the hat of my Canadian tour mate. He displayed the four red pedals in this foreign Israeli land where many don’t recognize its massive significance. You shed the MOST valuable red the world will ever know. Also Unrecognized by many.
I saw your pain today through the stories of peoples’ disappointments, divorces, sicknesses and unanswered prayers. You asked that the cup be taken before bearing the cross up skull hill. You know unanswered prayer. But you walked on to lay down your life. Many of my new friends are doing the same. They are following in your footsteps, saying “not my will but yours be done”, for the joy set before them.
Yes, Jesus, I saw you today. Not because your presence lives only in Israel, but because your power lives where your people walk in your footsteps.
Thank you for walking.
Thank you for dying.
Thank you for living.
And leading us on.