john 17:13

Art and Obligation | Chapter 21

Pairing: John/Paul

Rating: Nc-17 (PG-13, for this chapter)

Set in: 1820s (au)

Summary:  John Lennon works as the apprentice of a well-known portraitist and is tasked to do the picture of the young Mr. Paul McCartney. He is the son of Jim McCartney, a wealthy and powerful landowner, and has the reputation of an arrogant, spoilt brat with a pretty face, who has a way of wrapping anyone around his finger. But soon John finds that things are not as straightforward as they may seem.

Disclaimer: I do not own The Beatles and this is fictional. I do not make money off this.

Author’s note: Here we finally are again! And Happy Birthday to that anon from yesterday! I hope you had a great day and this chapter will make it a tiny little bit better. I am also going to try to post weekly again. I really want to, so I’m doing my best. Anyway, enjoy the chapter! I’ll be writing the next chapter of Poetry Nights next, so get excited about that too :) 

If John had had to imagine three months prior what he would be doing around this time, lying in bed with a fully-naked Paul McCartney in his arms would not have come to him. And yet, he was certain it was Paul’s hair tickling him under his nose, Paul’s arms that were wrapped firmly around his waist, Paul’s breath that ghosted over his sweat-slick skin, Paul’s legs that lay entwined with his own, and that if he would open his eyes for a second, he’d be looking down into Paul’s hazel puppy eyes. He didn’t dare to, though, fearing it was only his imagination and he wasn’t truly there, just a faint memory from their days spent in Paris – if he hadn’t imagined that as well. Besides, he didn’t want to ruin the moment. It was peaceful, quiet, intimate, everything John had thought they could never have. He was lying in bed, spend and out-of-breath, listening to the faint mutterings escaping Paul’s lips as he too returned from his high, while drawing circles on the sweaty skin of his lower back, linking birthmarks together with invisible ink to create various patterns, each one more intricate than the last.

A week had passed since John had practically begged Paul to stay with him despite his engagement to Miss Asher, and neither of them had brought it up since. John had been worried future meetings would be awkward, but surprisingly, they had been able to pick up where they had left off with ease. Paul had shown up the following Wednesday on time, and like before he had waited for John to guide his body into the proper position, something both now knew wasn’t needed. Still, John would gladly take any opportunity to be close to the other man and touch him, so he had complied without another word and had knelt down at his feet. At first both had been unsure and John’s touches had been light, an obvious tremor in his hands. But once John had laid his hand high on Paul’s thigh to keep his balance as he traced his jawline with his fingertips to angle his head just right – something he wouldn’t have dared to do before Paris – the initial nerves had been pushed aside and Paul had grabbed his waistcoat with eager hands to pull him into his lap for a determined kiss. John had relished the force with which Paul had kissed him, held him and devoured him, and had easily surrendered to his urgent touches that bordered on the edge of painful. It had been all they had needed to find that old informality again.

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Through Jesus, She Is: Purified
Day 4
Daily Verse:
“Peter persisted, ‘You’re not going to wash my feet—ever!’ Jesus said, ‘If I don’t wash you, you can’t be part of what I’m doing.’”
—John 13:8 (MSG)

Daily Devo:
For Simon Peter, it was strange to him that Jesus, the Messiah, would want to touch his dirty feet and clean them. Culturally, it made no sense. Why would someone so important want to touch something so dirty?

When you read John 13:1-17, you’ll find that Jesus’s actions had nothing to do with hygiene at all, but holiness. Even though Jesus Himself had no part in sinning Himself, this powerful moment in scripture is an example of how deeply Jesus loves us despite our filth. He isn’t surprised by what we’ve done wrong. He is far more focused on making us right and making us pure.

Often times in Christian culture, the word “purity” is usually just associated with encourage young people to not have sex before marriage. Yes, it is important to know that your body belongs to God and sex is apart of a bond between a man and woman who have made a vow before God through marriage, but as believers, we have to know that being pure before God isn’t just limited to not having sex. If we really want to be pure before God, we must do so in every area of our lives. We must come clean and admit that we need a Savior no matter what we have or haven’t done. Whether you’re a virgin or not, whether you’ve dated eight guys in the past three or you’ve never even been on a date at all, let Jesus be the One who gives you gives you a pure heart. Walk in that purity knowing that is Him that has made you clean.

Daily Reading:
John 13:1-17, Ezekiel 36:25, 1 Corinthians 6:11

Daily Challenge:
When you think of Jesus washing your feet, what moments in your life do you think of? Journal your thoughts.

Art and Obligation | Chapter 19

Pairing: John/Paul

Rating: Nc-17 (PG-13, for this chapter)

Set in: 1820s (au)

Summary:  John Lennon works as the apprentice of a well-known portraitist and is tasked to do the picture of the young Mr. Paul McCartney. He is the son of Jim McCartney, a wealthy and powerful landowner, and has the reputation of an arrogant, spoilt brat with a pretty face, who has a way of wrapping anyone around his finger. But soon John finds that things are not as straightforward as they may seem.

Disclaimer: I do not own The Beatles and this is fictional. I do not make money off this.

Author’s note: Surprise! Finally after ages and ages of waiting the next chapter has finally arrived. Thank you everyone for being patient and I hope you won’t be disappointed with this chapter :) Also, happy happy birthday to my lovely and wonderful ray of sunshine, Paul, who was born on this day 75 years ago! I love you, sweet darling boy. 

George and Pattie’s home was located at the edge of the McCartney estate, past the woods and alongside a small creek wherein the local children played when they thought their parents weren’t watching, and wherein the dogs washed their mud-covered paws. It was almost a tiny village in itself, separate from the city of Liverpool, with one narrow, cobblestone road snaking and twisting and weaving itself between and around a number of stone cottages, none of which were particularly large and were sometimes shared between two of three families. Most of them had a little green garden at the front, simple but well-kept, where mothers hung the laundry to dry in the warm but weak light of the English sun, and dogs lay snoring before they were awoken by the men and dragged along for business. The odd cat ran past, chasing a mouse, and birds chirped as they flew over or rested on the eaves of the houses where they were safe from the predators on the ground below. At the end of the little street, where it gently transitioned into a dirt road that disappeared over a gentle hill and further into the city, was the smallest of all cottages. It was the cottage of the Harrisons, which they shared with Miss May and her old father, the latter of whom sat sulking in an old rocking chair at the front of the garden by the stone, waist-high wall that bordered it. A few feet away from him, Pattie was pulling the dry laundry from the clothesline and into a laundry basket that stood by her naked feet, her blond hair tied up rather messily and covered by a shawl, and her swollen belly clearly visible in the green dress she was wearing. 

It was still early morning, the sun only having gone up about an hour ago, when it had shone into the bedroom of the eldest McCartney son, who had laid awake in his bed, unable to sleep any more than he had, which hadn’t been long. Not wanting to lie in bed for any longer, he had gotten up as soon as the light had hit his face, put on some simple clothes and decided to go on an early walk to enjoy the morning sun while he still could, taking Martha along with him, who had still been fast asleep at the foot end of the bed. He hadn’t considered visiting George and Pattie until he had found himself walking in the general direction of their home, but now he saw Pattie standing outside, quietly doing the laundry, he knew it had been a good idea. She put the last of the white shirts that Paul supposed were George’s into the basket, and had been about to pick it up when she caught sight of him from the corner of her eye and turned towards him to greet him with a broad, yet careful smile.

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Anyone. Anywhere. Anytime.

John 13:34-37 34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

 36 Simon Peter asked him, “Lord, where are you going?”

   Jesus replied, “Where I am going, you cannot follow now, but you will follow later.”

 37 Peter asked, “Lord, why can’t I follow you now? I will lay down my life for you.”

 38 Then Jesus answered, “Will you really lay down your life for me? Very truly I tell you, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times!

Peter gets put down a lot by a lot of preachers. And there’s a lot of ways in which it’s deserved. Peter does seem to consistently be the guy who who’s mouth is going faster than his brain (I can’t imagine what that must be like). And in what may be somewhat related, he also seems to leap before he looks, like that time he climbed out of a boat to go for a walk.

Now, I’ve heard a lot of sermons on this particular interaction between Jesus and Peter and every single one of them has always emphasized the fact that Peter is saying this when he’s going to deny even knowing Jesus to a couple of servant girls in just a few hours. And that is absolutely true. Peter really did betray Jesus at a time when Jesus certainly needed a friend. Peter really did screw up monumentally. But there is something very important that everyone that preaches about this seems to miss.

Peter wasn’t bluffing.

Yes, Peter did turn his back on Jesus. Yes, Peter did run with the other disciples at the end of the encounter in the garden of Gethsemane. But before either of those things happened, Peter pulled a sword and attacked a crowd of soldiers and men who already intended to murder Jesus. Do you realize what he was doing there? I really think that he was trying to buy Jesus time to escape. Maybe he thought that if he died doing this that Jesus would bring him back, or that God would protect him while he fought in His Son’s name. I don’t know. But regardless of that, Peter did the equivalent of pulling a gun on a crowd of policemen. That particular course of action is often called suicide by cop.

So, why am I focusing on this? Well, it isn’t entirely out of a desire to clear Peter’s name a little (though I guess that is sort of a part of it). It’s to point out that all this show of conviction does is emphasize just how far Peter fell. One moment he’s pulling a weapon and trying to pull a Gandalf “You shall not pass!” moment, and then, just a few hours later he’s to afraid of the possible consequences to tell a servant girl that he knows Jesus.

It doesn’t matter who you are. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done. Anyone can fall at any time. In fact, if you look through the scriptures it’s amazing how often the lowest points for people come immediately after their highest point. Elijah is one that springs to mind. Noah didn’t last real long after he got off of that boat. But this isn’t the end of the story. Not by a long shot. Peter screw up here, but Jesus had an angel “Go tell the disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’” Jesus wanted to see Peter again and requested him by name. No matter how far you fall, Jesus has it covered. Even if your greatest failures come on the heels of your greatest successes Jesus wants to see you. You can’t mess up enough to make Jesus stop caring about you and wanting to help you. He wants to be with you even when you are dirty or ugly or any other negative adjective you can think to use on yourself. He knows you and he loves you anyway.

beautiful picture of servanthood & love…

“After washing their feet, he [Jesus] put on his robe again and sat down and asked, ’Do you understand what I was doing? You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and you are right, because that’s what I am. And since I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each other’s feet” (John 13:12-14)

Hey, so, something like 2014 years ago, Jesus Christ gathered for a last supper with his twelve disciples. He washed their feet. He sat down and ate bread and drank wine with them. He told them that he didn’t have a lot of time left. He told them, on the night that one of his closest companions would sell him out for a few pieces of silver, on the eve of his brutal suffering and death for mankind, that he had a new commandment to give his followers. 

“Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another." 

–John 13: 34-35

This commandment, at the last moment. Love one another. This commandment, urgently spoken, before Jesus departs from his disciples to die on a cross for them. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. We are called to love another as He loved us. How did Jesus love his disciples as he walked the Earth? How does he love us now? Perfectly. Sacrificially. With mercy. In service. 

This is our Savior’s commandment. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. Christians are called to be known, above all else, for loving our brothers and sisters as well as we can. For loving them as much like Jesus does as we can. 

Remember that Jesus is speaking to men who are far from perfect followers. Jesus speaks to men who have shown themselves, over and over again through the gospel, to doubt, to sin, and to have flawed theology. Jesus speaks to men who will fall asleep when they are supposed to be keeping watch over him, though they know that this is his last night on earth. Jesus speaks to Peter, fully aware that as he suffers torture and death, this disciple will deny even knowing him. Jesus speaks to Thomas, who, after hearing this prophecy, after seeing Jesus perform miracle after miracle, will doubt that He is the risen Son of God. And yet, "having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end” (John 13:1)

So friends, please, could we stop saying “I hate Christians”? Or “I hate this denomination” or “this denomination is wrong” or “this person’s theology is poisonous” or “this person is not really a Christian because XYZ.” We all fall short of the glory of God. We will never, as earthly beings, have a perfect understanding of Truth. Yes, it is easy to be frustrated with a very flawed church. Yes, there are Christians out there whose beliefs we may find offensive/hateful/just plain wrong. And we should discuss and debate and allow iron to sharpen iron, but as followers of Jesus, we cannot meet even hate with hate. We are called to meet hate with love, meet apathy with love, meet love with love. We are called to love one another as Jesus loves us. Let’s do that. Let’s love.

"Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end." - John 13:1

He takes my breath away every time.

Even though He knew His days were numbered. He knew one of His best friends was going to betray Him for a few silver coins. And He still loved all of them. He still humbled Himself to wash their feet and teach them. And after He was mocked, beaten, and crucified, He said “it is finished”.

He finishes what He starts and loves to the end. 

Let me give you a new command: Love one another. In the same way I loved you, you love one another. This is how everyone will recognize that you are my disciples—when they see the love you have for each other.
—  John 13:34-35 msg
In John 13...,

Jesus tells his disciples that the world will be able to recognize his followers simply by looking at the way we love each other. The world will know us by observing our love, a love that isn’t logical, because it’s Jesus’ love. I love that He fills us up so that we can pour it out, especially since we are in no way deserving of any of it. He loves us anyway. And that, my brothers and sisters, is the greatest thing in the world. How cool would it be if this generation could start a love revolution, completely surrendering our lives to spread the love and forgiveness of Christ?! Pretty stinkin’ awesome!

Go spread His love today!

We see Jesus unexpectedly rising up from supper; and for what purpose? 

To appear in His dignity? 

To display the splendor of His divine glory? 

To constrain His disciples to bow down in the dust before Him? 

One might imagine so; but no, He has something very different in view. 

Look, what He does!  He lays aside His upper garments, takes a towel and girds Himself with it; pours water into a basin, bends down to the feet of the disciples, and begins to wash them in their turn, then to wipe them dry with a towel. What a spectacle!

They are to Him– the Spiritual Bride, clothed with the sun; for they stand before Him arrayed in the royal robe of His righteousness.

O great and significant symbol! 

O powerful exposition of the words, 

He came not to be ministered unto, but to minister! 

O important testimony to that which is of value in His kingdom, and to that which is not! 

O impressive condemnation of all selfishness and self-exaltation in the children of men and women! 

O deeply affecting commendation of humility and self-denial, as the characteristics of His children, and amiable and ennobling act of that love, which ought to animate us to do the same!

-F. W. Krummacher 

John 13 . 17

Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet

Before the Passover festival, Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and go back to the Father. Jesus loved His own who were in the world, and He loved them to the end.

While supper was taking place, the devil had already put the idea of betraying Jesus into the mind of Judas, son of Simon Iscariot.

The Father had put everything in Jesus’ control. Jesus knew that. He also knew that he had come from God and was going back to God. 

So He got up from the table, removed His outer clothes, took a towel, and tied it around His waist. 

Then He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet and dry them with the towel that He had tied around His waist.

When Jesus came to Simon Peter, Peter asked Him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”

Jesus answered Peter, “You don’t know now what I’m doing. You will understand later.”

Peter told Jesus, “You will never wash my feet.”

Jesus replied to Peter, “If I don’t wash you, you don’t belong to me.”

Simon Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, don’t wash only my feet. Wash my hands and my head too!”

Jesus told Peter, “People who have washed are completely clean. They need to have only their feet washed. All of you, except for one, are clean.”  Jesus knew who was going to betray Him. That’s why He said, “All of you, except for one, are clean.”

After Jesus had washed their feet and put on His outer clothes, He took his place at the table again. Then He asked His disciples, “Do you understand what I’ve done for you?  You call me teacher and Lord, and you’re right because that’s what I am. 

So if I, your Lord and teacher, have washed your feet, you must wash each other’s feet. 

I’ve given you an example that you should follow. 

I can guarantee this truth: Slaves are not superior to their owners, and messengers are not superior to the people who send them. 

If you understand all of this, you are blessed whenever you follow my example.

John 13

Jesus washing the disciples’ feet is so beautiful. So much love and humility is shown. He showed them love even though He knew Judas was going to betray Him. It’s definitely one of those hard-to-do examples He has set for us to follow. But when we trust God we can have the strength to follow Him and show acts of love and kindness toward one another.

I am so amazed.

John 13:26-27
Jesus responded, “It is the one to whom I give the bread I dip in the bowl.” And when he had dipped it, he gave it to Judas, son of Simon Iscariot. When Judas had eaten the bread, Satan entered into him. Then Jesus told him, “Hurry and do what you’re going to do.

This was during the Last Supper and what AMAZES me is that last part in bold. It just shows how ready and willing Jesus was to die for us. He was ready to be betrayed by one of his followers, ready to be beaten, ready to shed blood for you and me, ready to die. It’s His love that’s unlike any other that lead Him to be so willing. The perfect Lamb ready to be sacrificed. Today is Good Friday. It’s not good cause Jesus died, but it’s good because He died for all of us. Do you not see the beauty in that? 

Love one another...

I came across an article at a website, that explains some misconceptions the public have regarding Catholics.

In this day and age, we should focus more on our Christ given similarities rather than our differences… It makes me sad that Protestants and Catholics sometimes hate each other’s guts… Maybe I am exaggerating, but some articles, blogs, books and Internet posts point in that direction. Jesus taught us to Love one another…

John 13:34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
John 13:35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
Why is it then, that Christians do not practice what our Bible teaches? It is understandable that non-Christians sometimes shun us and our religion. Reason being, we do not practice what we preach… I know, you may say, but we are humans.. Well, that is somewhat of an excuse… If we have the Love of God within us, we will be inspired via His Holy Spirit, to do the right things, to carry His will for us, on a daily basis… But we have to have God’s help, and the only way we can get that help is to ask Him.

When God’s Spirit lives in you, then all of a sudden, barriers to loving other Christians, even our enemies vanish, for then we are empowered by the Holy Spirit to do and follow this commandment.