Relaxed Grip – Br. Luke Ditewig

John 8:51 – 59

“Are you greater than our father Abraham?” They were confused and upset. How could those who kept his word not see death? They clung to what they knew and could not hear or see something more. They clung so tightly to being Abraham’s children, that they missed really seeing Jesus.

What might you be clinging to so tightly such that it’s hard to recognize what is real? What is getting in the way between you and Jesus?

Perhaps it’s who we are or what we have: heritage, group-identity, connections. Perhaps it’s the people we love or who love us best, our meaningful relationships. Perhaps it’s comfort or privilege, standard of living, status or success. Perhaps it’s abilities, gifts, how we serve, what we do well—including for God.  

Maybe what gets in the way—why it is hard to see or hear Jesus—is not something we have. Maybe we are like Moses before the burning bush caught by what we don’t have: “I can’t talk well. I don’t know what to say.” Perhaps we are overly focused on our lack, our limits, losses, pain, and weakness, and we despair thinking Jesus is out of touch.

Listen to Jesus: “Before Abraham was, I am.”

It doesn’t matter what you have or what you lack. Before your heritage, privilege, or ability, Jesus is. Before your losses, lack, or inability, Jesus is. Before your fear, grief, confidence, or confusion, Jesus is. Jesus sees you and loves you.

Today we remember Mary, the Mother of Jesus. Though baffled at hearing that she would bear God’s son, Mary did not cling to her confusion, fear, what she had nor what she lacked. Listen. Love is calling. With a relaxed grip—like Mary—bravely say “Yes.”

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  1. Richard Whitney on November 17, 2021 at 14:28

    Always good!

  2. Mary Naumann on November 17, 2021 at 11:31


  3. Bobbi on November 17, 2021 at 07:05

    I will carry this with me today and listening to it again this evening. Thank you, Br. Luke, for opening a space within me for Jesus to enter.

  4. Cathy on November 17, 2021 at 00:09

    Thank you for this thought. Really helpful today.

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