Recently I lost a dear mother and dear friend. She went home to be with the Lord.
The disciples experienced this loss too. The reality had just dawned on them that Jesus was going to leave them; they had spent the last three years constantly in His presence. How could they possibly survive without Him being physically with them?
Jesus is fully aware of their dismay and in His final discourse with these close companions, He opens up a new way. His leaving them is not the disaster they have imagined, but in fact is opening up a new and exciting way forward.
John chapters 14 – 16 unfold this new way – Jesus explains, Yes, I am going away and will be returning to my Father, but, “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:18). Jesus then tells them about the Holy Spirit, “You know him, for he lives with you, and will be in you.” This is not a loss – but a gain. Jesus was confined by space and time – the Holy Spirit will indwell all those who invite Him to fill them and empower them. “You won’t lose my presence!”
Jesus continues, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.” (John 15:9). Jesus is explaining – “You won’t lose My love, I have enjoyed the Father’s love all the time I have been on earth, my love for you never ends – remain in my love.”
In John 14:23, Jesus has added another dimension, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with them.” Not only will these disciples be filled with The Holy Spirit, and be bathed in the love of Jesus,
but both Jesus and the Father will come and make their home in them. We too are disciples of Jesus.
Later on Jesus adds His own testimony, “You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.” (John 16:32)
Human friendship is of great value and we need to cherish our friends, however, there are times when we can feel great isolation, with no friends near – it is at those times we need to be able to declare with joy and confidence – “I am not alone for my Father is with me.”
Source: Howard Barnes, Time Out Mission