Our faith is always on the move.
Abraham is told to “go,” without first knowing where he was going.
Moses bounces back and forth between the wilderness and Egypt until he is finally commissioned and empowered to lead the Israelites to their new home.
David is a refugee on the run long before he is the settled King of Jerusalem.
The apostle Paul, perhaps the most restless of all major biblical personalities, is the living definition of “being all over the map.” Just look in the back of most Bibles.
So the itinerant ministry of Jesus should be of little surprise. He travels back and forth between the north and south of Israel and Judah, Galilee and Bethany, Samaria and Jerusalem.
It was said that foxes have holes, birds have nests, but the Son of God has no dependable place to lay his head.
These observations help us cope with a world in great consternation and transition. It seems nothing is reliable and nothing is anchored down.
Recent upheavals of earth and property continually challenge our desire to keep things nailed down. As much as we desire constancy and safety, we are continually thrust into new territories waiting with new challenges.
As a people of faith, we should accept this as how it should be. Placing our trust in an undependable world is sinking sand.
Sir Michael Philip Jagger is right: When our hope is rooted in things, experiences and people, “We can’t get no satisfaction.”
The journey with Jesus through his passion finds the rock of his experience grounded in an unshakable conviction of loving God regardless of the risks and following God regardless of the challenges. Jesus goes through this most difficult week consistently as “the Christ.”
He defends the weak, embracing the woman who anoints his feet with oil. He weeps for those who grieve and confronts those who are too proud to admit they have sold out to a fallen world of abuse and corruption.
He forgives those who harm him and welcomes those who, even in their final breath of life, are willing to follow him.
He travels through pain and suffering, abandonment and betrayal, torture and death. His lifeless and broken body hangs on the executioner’s beam. He has done it all, faced it all and gone through it all.
On Friday, it is finished. Or so it seems. For Sunday’s coming and another journey is yet to begin.
Mark Johnson is senior minister at Central Baptist Church in Lexington, Ky.
Mark Johnson is senior pastor of Central Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky.