John was the man that stayed and hanging around with Jesus changed his life.
Many men wanted to follow Jesus until the Teacher said some hard things. Jesus demanded people think, but most men just wanted Him to provide bread and edutainment.
John saw people look for easy answers and miss Jesus.
A few men were intrigued with Jesus, but balked at giving up their stuff. Jesus saw one such man, but Bible readers never learn this young man’s name, because he passed on making it into the New Testament in order to keep his local wealth and fame. Judas made money by following Jesus, but lost his soul.
John saw friends love money and fame and miss History and Love Incarnate.
Three men were part of Jesus’ inner circle, but when things did not go well, all but one man ran away. These two had given up everything for Jesus, but could not give up their fears or their disappointments. Sacred blood was shed and they were in hiding with nothing to tell of Good Friday, but their failures.
John saw Peter and James run and miss the Cross.
Only one man followed Jesus all the way to the Cross: John.
What did John gain? He stood at the foot of the Cross and Jesus gave him a job. The woman who first said “yes” to the Word of God was placed in his care. John was the friend that Jesus could trust with His mother, because John stayed.
Jesus had been followed by many men, by a few, by three, and now only by one man. The women were there, but only John was faithful amongst the men.
This is not strange to any Christian alive today. The hard times in a Church will often see a few women and one man standing ready to do their final duty. Too many men have chosen simple mindedness, money, practicality, or their fears to stay.
Staying the course sounds easy, but only John succeeded.
John was a “son of thunder” in his early days. He was brave and only a brave man can succeed. He would become known as “the theologian. Only a man who wanted real answers could look at the Cross standing next to the mother of God. Fundamentally, John became the apostle of Love, because John was a true friend to Jesus. Where others saw a miracle worker or a sage, John saw a man worth his highest devotion.
John loved his friend and saw loved God.
God grant me those manly gifts.