I will be the first to admit, I do not read the Bible on a regular basis. Up until today, I had not read it in weeks. I do not know why that is, but I just didn’t feel drawn to it like I normally would be. I often feel like the “lost sheep.” I wander away from God a lot. Either through distraction, fear, frustration, my own free will, or anything else. But when I feel like God is talking to me, and I need to go back to reading Scripture, I always pick things back up by returning to one spot: The Gospel of John.
I always find John’s account of Jesus’ life and ministry beautiful, interesting and relatable. Not to mention it’s easier to follow than most other Scripture. The account of Jesus’ life is beautiful in the Gospel of John because to me, it shows the depth of Jesus’ love for us in a way other books or readings might not. He reveals who He is through numerous miracles of compassion, such as healing the lame beggar who couldn’t walk, the healing of the blind man, the feeding of the five thousand people, and his greatest work (aside from dying for us and rising on Easter Sunday), the resurrection of his friend, Lazarus.
I feel like the Gospel of John is kind of “in your face” in a good way, too, because in it Jesus is referred to by several names, and He refers to Himself by several names as well. The Son of God, The Son of Man, The Word, The Light of the World, The Bread of Life. Heck, the whole thing itself starts out:
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing came to be. What came to be through him was life, and this life was the light of the human race; the light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
I often struggle with understanding who exactly Jesus is. And the various names, signs and miracles in this Gospel fix that by being like a series of unmistakable, crystal clear neon signs pointing to exactly what and who He is. Unlike some Old Testament Scriptures where we can infer that many of them talk about Jesus, the Gospel of John makes no mistake about who Jesus is. John leaves no room for ambiguity. After that, it’s on us to either accept that Jesus is exactly who He claims to be, or not.
The Gospel of John is relatable to me too, because I see myself in His Apostles and followers: I’m like Peter when I stumble or put my foot in my mouth. I’m like Thomas when I doubt. I’m like Mary Magdalene or Matthew when I feel dirty or unworthy of embracing my Christian faith because of all the wrong things I’ve done. The people who followed Jesus back in His day down here were incredibly flawed people. And I’m sure they knew it, too. It comforts me when I know this. I am not worthy. But I also know, that every one of Jesus’ followers was unworthy too. Yet He still loved them, and showed them the magnitude of His love for them through His sacrifice. So I know He does the same for me, you, and everyone. But it’s up to us to recognize where we fall short, so we can be better, albeit still very flawed versions of ourselves. And where we struggle, Jesus’ grace is sufficient to cover us.
If you are like I am, and haven’t read Scripture in a while, you feel lost, or you feel weighed down by life’s worries, open the Gospel of John. It’s a drink of water for a parched soul, and peace from the worries of the world. An anchor that you can always return to when weathering the stormy areas of life.
God bless you all! Take care, everybody! 🙂