Day 1: John 20:19-23
Disciples in the Upper Room
Do not be diverted from purpose
Have you ever been on a diversion? Sometimes we come across them on our way to a destination by road. Diversions can be frustrating; they are inconvenient, if we take a wrong turn we can miss our destination, or arrive later than planned.
The disciples were experiencing a diversion. Jesus, the promised Messiah and Saviour had been crucified. His followers gathered in secret, fearful for their lives.
They found themselves on a diversionary road they would rather not have taken and it took them to a dark place; a place called ‘fear’ (verse 19), a place where they lose perspective and lose awareness of their purpose in God.
In the midst of this diversion, Jesus appears to them and brings hope in the darkness. He reassures them that he is sending them and directs them to receive the equipping of the Holy Spirit for what is ahead.
At this time of uncertainty, we find ourselves on a road we would rather not have taken, unsure of where it is leading and perhaps also unsure of God’s purpose. This is a time, however, to be glad that God’s presence is with us: verse 19
Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, Peace be with you.
As we spend time in God’s presence; gladness and peace replace fear, and seeming diversion brings us back to the destination of purpose.
If we struggle to understand what is happening, it remains true that God has a purpose for our lives. He does not forget this: Philippians 1:6
He who has begun a good work in you will complete it.
Let us not be diverted from purpose if the road looks dark and uncertain. Jesus reminded the disciples of his sending purpose and the Holy Spirit reminds us:
‘As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.’ (v21).