At this stage of our Lenten journey, we encounter the fruit and the charge that comes with losing our life to find it in God—service. We cannot follow Jesus without serving our neighbors. Losing our lives to God does not mean we burn ourselves out to save the world all on our own. Losing our lives to God also means trusting that God does not need us to do everything—only the things we are called to do.

if we’re paying attention to the sensory experiences in today’s text, we can’t miss the booming voice from heaven that some of the crowd mistook for thunder. who else we’re not expecting to speak that we might need to hear from? The children wiggling in the pews next to their parents? A teacher from a nearby school? The local business owner who set up shop across the street? What might these unexpected voices have to tell us about our neighborhood and its needs? And then, how might we, as followers of Jesus, show up where we are needed? Because where there is a need for love and flourishing and community, Jesus is there. And where Jesus is, there we must follow.