We often want options, some of us always want options. When we get news we don’t want or are in a situation we dislike we want an option. This is only natural and all too human. But what do we do when we don’t have an option, an alternative? For that matter, what do I do?
I wish I had a heroic story or two about my rising to an occasion and surmounting my complete lack of options with serene acceptance but I can’t remember such a thing off the top of my head. When I am in a situation where there is only one thing to do and that is see it out, I expend quite a lot of energy looking for what I already know isn’t there.
Today’s Gospel lesson is one of those situations for Jesus’ followers.
Jesus puts before them some things they don’t want to hear with implications they don’t want to think about leading to actions they don’t want to do. Many of them leave. When all the leavers have left, Jesus turns to the remaining few and asks them if they want to go to. Peter responds with, “Lord, to whom can we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (NRSV) Peter has looked at the alternatives and there aren’t any.
What we are exploring today is what does it mean to us? The sermon title is “Where else?” and I’m hoping you get an answer.