At some point, you may have watched a movie or television show that involved time travel, such as Back to the Future or Doctor Who. The plot often includes a hero who knows what’s going to happen in the future and travels through time to avert some terrible calamity. It usually takes a lot of creativity to come up with a story like that because of course, time travel is impossible. Still, there is a real-life “hero” who knows our future and who is committed to helping us experience the best future possible: Jesus.
Just look at the Last Supper. Jesus knows that Judas is going to betray him and is destined for a tragic end (John 13:21-27; 17:12). He also knows that Peter will fail him as well but that Peter will repent and become even more zealous (13:36-38). But notice how Jesus treats these two men: he washes their feet and then shares his last meal with both of them. He wants to make sure that neither of them experiences rejection or condemnation from him, only love.
Jesus knows everything about our future too. He knows that we’ll have some big successes and some big failures. But he never gives up on us. That can bring us great confidence and security because it shows that we don’t have to figure everything out perfectly or do everything just right. Because Jesus sticks with us, there is always hope for us and for our loved ones. As the psalmist prays, “Behind and before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me. . . . My days were shaped, before one came to be” (139:5, 16).
The first Holy Week is not just something that happened long ago. Its effects extend to the present day and on into the future—a future that only Jesus knows. And through it all, he is still with you. His love and grace are still available for you. Perhaps you’ve been away from him for a long time. Or perhaps you feel the need to walk more closely with him. Whatever your past, whatever your future, wherever you are today, Jesus is there too. So reach out to him and accept his incredible mercy.
“Lord, thank you that you never, ever give up on me. Help me to never give up on you!”
Almighty ever-living God, grant us so to celebrate the mysteries of the Lord's Passion that we may merit to receive your pardon.