My crew and I have been watching the entire series of LOST. We have thoroughly enjoyed it–partly because of the implausible yet fascinating plot of the story, but also because of our personal connection to the filming of LOST. Lost was filmed mostly on the island of Oahu, where we lived during the filming of the show. We’ve enjoyed pointing out the places that we recognize: Manoa falls, Honolulu International Airport, Tantalus, the Palace, Bishop Museum, and even our very own street that we lived on. Also, there is a character in the show named Claire, who has a baby. The baby’s real mom was very involved at our church in Hawaii, and the baby played our “Baby Jesus” in our annual Christmas play.
We also got to eat with the cast a couple of times, when they set up their lunch tents on the parking lot of our Hawaii Baptist Convention offices. And we would see the “sets” from time to time while just out doing the things one does when they live on an island.
There isn’t even a way to summarize or explain the plot of LOST. All I can do to categorize it, is to say that it is a story about relationships. About friendships. About caring for each other, fighting for each other, loving each other. Genuine friendship. Authentic friendship. This group of people, through the circumstances of crashing (or not crashing, depending on your personal LOST theory) on this island, form friendships of this nature.
In the very last scene of the series, we find out that everyone has died. Why? Well, because everyone dies. We all will someday either go home, or be eternally separated from God the Father, from Jesus. But what happens in between now and then?
I’m reminded tonight of a verse–a whole chapter, actually, in John 15. Here is a poignant portion of that passage (forgive me for the alliteration, I couldn’t resist):
12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.
Take a look at verse 13:
13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.
This has prompted me to examine my soul and my mind—do I have this kind of love for my friends? For my family? For my church? That I would lay down my life—my goals, my ambitions, my opinions, my desires, and yes, even my very life, all for the sake of my friends?
That is exactly what Jesus did. At least, it is exactly what He did with his very life, as He lay it down for his friends. For you. For me. How do we know this? I believe the answer to that question is found in the next verses:
14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.
Jesus is talking with his disciples, during the last time they will all be together–the Last Supper together. And during his conversation with them, he tells them “but I have called you friends”. Friends! Friends of the son of God, friends of God Himself. It’s astonishing, really. Friends for whom Jesus was going to lay down his life for.
Me too. Us too. Because Jesus not only laid down His life for those who were with him that night, but for each of us, as our sins were paid for on the Cross, through the sacrifice of God’s only son. And that “Greater Love” that lay down His life for His friends, is the same “Greater Love” that we have even today with God. With Jesus.
Friendship is a remarkable thing.
I want to be the kind of friend that Jesus was.