If we had been there, surrounding Jesus during his last hours, I know I would have been confused.
First there's this party; then there's a feast where Jesus washes 12 stinking sets of feet, beautifully referencing his ultimate service. Then there's a trudge to the garden in the middle of the night, the admonishment to stay awake, the arrest, the scatter.
More confusing and painful events will occur for these lowly followers.
My 5 year old asked me about Good Friday this morning. As I began to tell him the story and his soft little boy fingers stroked my face (and kind of got on my nerves), I realized not for the first time the complexity of the story. So much had to align; so many layers of meaning converge; so many people were involved in different ways with differing motives.
The thing I want to focus on, though, is that as they witnessed the foot washing, the praying, the arresting, the healing, the disciples DID NOT KNOW Sunday would be so amazing.
Again I try to put myself in their sandals. Their leader, their friend, their teacher again did not live up to human hype about rulers. Rulers don't serve, they thought. Kings don't ride donkeys, and they sure as heck don't get arrested on trumped up charged, especially without a fight.
But I think the most painful, confusing part for them would be hearing their King say, "It is finished," hang his head and descend into death. They did not know SUNDAY was coming.
Removed by centuries we easily gloss over Good Friday. We know Sunday is just a matter of days and hours. We know the war is over; we know the end of the story. We read the last chapter.
So as I move through a day where there's no school, no work, nothing big planned, I pray that I am called back to the followers' spot in history. To reflect on what they felt as they watched him die. I have always appreciated the disciples for their humanity. They are prideful, eager, sometimes a little slow, impetuous, ambitious. In short, they are people. They are not always painted in the best light, but isn't that most accurate? They did not know Sunday was coming.