For I have set you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you. - John 13:15
I am a Red Number Christian.
My email inbox serves as something of a “to do” list. Clear inboxes mean much has been accomplished—at least of the things people ask of me.
The little red number on the email icon tells me just how many new things someone wants me to do. I am bound—entirely captivated—by the bidding of this red number. It is so important that it has become an object of my faith.
Icons, by definition, point us to something. The red number points me so slavishly to things others would have me to do that I can quite quickly forget what God would have me to do first.
Maundy comes from the Latin Mandatum, a commandment to come first, before all else. A red number that will not show up on your email icon, except…
When a person knows they can reach out to you for a prayer.
When a task asks you to love radically.
When a possibility emerges to kneel at the feet of the friend before you.
When a moment comes to offer the very sort of thing Jesus always did:
When we do any or all of this, we follow the mandate.
Look at your icons. What points you to Jesus? What inspires you to follow him in your tasks for today?
On this holy day in a Holy Week, may your gaze linger there before everything else.
Set before me icons to point to you, O God. May we see our way to following you, listening for you, doing as you have done. In the name of Jesus, Amen.
Kaji Douša is the Senior Pastor of The Park Avenue Christian Church, a congregation of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and the United Church of Christ, in New York City.