It is a universal issue for anyone who has any kind of relationships. Sooner or later, you will have a family member or close friend who has a problem, and you can’t fix it. Maybe they are ill, and you can’t cure their disease. Maybe things are not going well at work, and it is not advisable to threaten to beat us their boss for them. Maybe they are making poor decisions, and you can’t stop them from going down the wrong road. You would help if you could. But you can’t.
“Woman, here is your son.” Jesus spoke those words for the cross. He was telling his mother that from that point forward, one of his disciples would function as her son, providing for her and protecting her. Each Sunday during this season of Lent we are looking at one of the statements Jesus made from the cross. This may be the statement to which we can most easily relate. We all have the experience of wanting to do something for someone we love. When we can’t, we try to find another way.
As we look at this story in the Gospel of John, we will find three lessons:
First, it is valuable to simply remember that our family member or friend needs help. What is most remarkable about this Bible story is that in the midst of his agony, Jesus was able to think about his mother and her well-being. Even in the midst of our own problems, we can be mindful of the others in our lives.
Second, we may find that we need to call on someone in the community, or someone from our church, to help. We want to be self-reliant. And we want to personally help those close to us. Sometimes we need to call on someone else. Jesus called upon his disciple.
Third, we can always pray for our family and friends, and commend them to God. When we have our own problems, we trust that God is good and everything will be alright. In like manner, when someone we love has a problem, we trust that God is good and everything will turn out alright for them. When a family member or close friend has a problem that we can’t fix, it’s tough on us, so we need to have faith. We needd to trust that God will take care of them.