One of the many events Jesus participated in during his final days in Jerusalem was celebrating the Passover feast with his disciples. What a beautiful image we celebrate of Jesus surrounded by his disciples! This is the final meal that they will share together. Can’t you imagine the scene full of laughter, story telling, and eating? Friends sharing a special meal together. A true Eucharistic gathering where they are fed both physically and spiritually.
I so often think of Holy Thursday from the disciples perspective- a typical Passover meal where the person they have come to know as the Messiah suddenly washes their feet and gives them instruction to go and do likewise.
What did this Passover meal mean to Jesus? Jesus knew what was coming. He knew that he was about to be betrayed by one of his own disciples. He knew he was about to be questioned. He knew hard times were ahead. Perhaps, Jesus needed his circle of support gathered around him as he prepared to face the hard journey ahead. Perhaps, Jesus needed his disciples, his friends, to minister to him, to fill him with courage,and to strengthen him by their presence.
Jesus remained rooted, firmly in God. Jesus drew his strength from God even during these final hours as he shared a last meal with his friends. Jesus, though, was human. Jesus yearned for support from his friends like we do. We see in scripture where Jesus begged his disciples to “stay awake” with him as he prayed. They kept falling asleep as we so often do.
Jesus needs us now like he needed his disciples then. We are his hands, his feet, his body now on earth.
Will we be there for Jesus?
Will we do what God asks of us?