[Jesus said,] â€œBut now I am going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, â€˜Where are you going?â€™ But because I have told you these things, sorrow has filled your heart.â€ John 16:5-6 (WEB)
As a hospice nurse for twelve years, I have attended many, many deaths. I have been honored to be there as people truly looked with joy to where they were going. Jesus said He was going back. He was going someplace familiar. He was going home.
The disciples could not get past the fact that Jesus was leaving them. Jesus was abandoning them. He was going some place that they could not go â€“ now. The disciples were sad. They were grieving. As Jesus observed, their hearts were filled â€“ with sorrow.
When life takes a sharp turn, an unexpected turn, too often our hearts (and minds) are filled with sadness, disappointment, frustration, even anger. Those thoughts block the truth of the situation that the Holy Spirit is trying to bring. In this passage, the disciples were missing the message of what was to come. They could not hear the victory that was assured. God’s Kingdom was had truly come to earth through Jesus!
In life’s reality I may stand and stare at a close door and miss the doors and windows that God is opening! I believe that this is when through the Holy Spirit a fellowship of believers comes together and God’s desired focus can return. The disciples found this after Pentecost. They learned to come together in unity and help one another to stay to the course. The Holy Spirit, the Comforter, brings that healing power that raises the eyes up from the closed door to the opening where Jesus beckons us to â€œComeâ€.
The hardest day of my life was when Jesus quietly, gently told me that it was not the Father’s plan for my son, James, to be healed. He was going to die. Even as my heart cried, â€œNo!â€, my spirit knew that Jesus was not bringing the message and then leaving me in the dirt! Jesus was there with strong arms to hold me and the assurance that He was not going to leave me or James. Neither one of us would ever be left alone as we had to walk in opposite directions â€“ for now.
Jesus wanted His disciples to ask where He was going because the answer was important and victorious!!! The very thing that we may not want to know â€“ may have the information we need to know!
â€œTherefore you now have sorrow, but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. In that day you will ask me no questions. Most certainly I tell you, whatever you may ask of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. Until now, you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be made full.â€ v. 22-24 (WEB)