Tues, 5/12/20: "Peace I leave with you"
In our gospel passage today (John 14:27-31a), Jesus tells his disciples: "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you." The context for these words is the "Last Supper". Jesus was about to be arrested, tried, tortured, and killed. We ought to let that sink in.
Jesus was going to be violently separated from his disciples, but his peace is to abide within them in the context of his absence. That is his will.
We seem to be in similar times. To many, it can seem as if Jesus has been violently separated from his disciples once again (from the perspective of the lack of public Masses). But his peace is still meant to abide with his disciples, even in this absence. That was the context for the apostles. That is today's context, as well.
"Not as the world gives do I give it to you..." Jesus promises us his peace. I ask myself: "Does my peace actually come from the world? How much of the peace I enjoy rely on someone else's decisions or actions? What happens if someone doesn't act or decide in a way that I approve? Do I lose my sense of peace?"
If I lose my peace based on someone else's decision or action, then that is their peace. That was never Christ's peace to begin with. Christ's peace cannot be taken away by the decisions and actions of others.
Jesus continues: "Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, 'I am going away and I will come back to you.'" The power of Christ's resurrection cannot be bound by the decisions of men. Jesus lives. Our hunger will be satisfied.
"I am certain that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom 8:38-39).
Leonardo Da Vinci, The Last Supper: image retrieved from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Supper_(Leonardo)