After an emergency or a crisis, there is always the time when you come back and look around at the place that you left in such a hurry.
About ten years ago, my grandmother got very sick and was rushed to the hospital. I went to my parents’ house and found a crockpot full of chili sitting on the counter that had been there since suppertime the night before. You don’t always stop to clean things up when you’re in a hurry.
I was wondering who cleaned up after the last supper. Were some of the disciples intending to come back after their after-dinner walk with Jesus? Then everything was interrupted. Was it hours later, even the next day, that anyone came back into that upstairs room where Jesus had washed their feet and talked about the bread and the cup?
What did they see? Was there maybe the bowl and a still-damp towel, sitting on the floor? Maybe there was a cup that someone had knocked over, with the wine spilling out. Maybe some of the bread was left on the plate, leftovers broken in pieces. Maybe there were candles burned down to stubs, or empty oil lamps that they had used to light the room during their last meal with Jesus. Had they expected to come back to a room that felt so empty and yet that held so many things that reminded them of their Lord?
What did they do with the things? Did someone get busy then and wash the dishes? Did they pack everything away as it was, not wanting to have to deal with such things at such a time? Did they call some women in and ask them to wipe everything up?
Or did someone else come in and clear everything away, not knowing anything about what had happened there that night? Did the disciples come back to a room that was empty, cleaned out? Maybe the whole thing seemed like a dream that had never happened.
What do you think?
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