dear diary — 9th day of nisan

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9th day of Nisan, 8:30 pm

Dear Diary,

Mom embarrassed John and I today.  Got us in trouble with the other 10 as well. Last week at dinner we mentioned our hopes that Jesus would give us important places in his new government.  She said she wanted to help.  We thought she was going to launch a little publicity campaign among our neighbors, you know, telling them how great we were and how hard we were working for this new up-and-coming ruler.  We figured by the time the insurgence was successful, we’d be sure bets to be voted into Jesus’ cabinet — a brain trust of sorts.  I’ve already written our campaign slogan:  “The Sons of Thunder — Consultants for a New Kingdom, Advisers of a New Empire.”  [Either that or “Yes We Can.”]

But Salome wasn’t thinking about a publicity campaign.  Nope, she grabbed our hands today and took us straight to the Son of Man.  Then she asked him point blank if we could sit to the left and right of his throne.  She could have at least written a note, flirted a little, or hinted around.  But no, our mom just came right out and asked — didn’t even introduce herself.  Jesus looked at us a long time and asked if we could drink what he was going to drink.  Now… it’s true that John can’t hold his wine quite like I can, but either of us can drink Jesus under the table.  I thought we’d proved that a long time ago at the wedding in Cana.  Seriously, the guy miraculously turned over 150 gallons of water to wine, and only drank a single glass himself.  And he nursed that one glass all night long, trying to make it look like he could drink more than he could.  He’s a pretty little guy.  I still don’t get why people are calling him a glutton and a drunk, though; I mean the guy eats and drinks — he’s no John the Baptist — but a glass of wine at a wedding party?  **sideways smirk**

Anyway, John and I tried to answer (in short and without snickering) that we could indeed drink anything he could.  We really didn’t want to go into details about our drinking habits, what with our mom standing there with us.  I personally think I’m too old to be dragged by the ear to dad for a spanking.  [But I thought I was too old that day in synagogue, too, when mom caught me passing notes up front with the youth group.  I’ll never forget how scared I was when I saw her standing up from her pew in the middle of the sermon and motioning for me to come.  And I was right to be afraid — Zebedee wore my hind side out that day in the room that’s supposed to be for deaf people and mothers with crying babies.]  So neither me nor John were excited about having to explain our drinking to father, especially after a bad day of fishing.  He’s been just a little grumpy ever since we left the family business anyway.  And he doesn’t like drinking at all.  He actually tried to convince me the other day that the Greek word for wine really just means fruit juice.  I mean I know I mostly speak Aramaic, but I’m no dummy.  Why would people put fruit juice in wineskins?  **rolling eyes**

So… when Jesus asked John and I if we could drink anything he drank, we just kind of shrugged our shoulders, held in our laughter, and mumbled, “we can.”

His answer: “You’ll have to share a cup with me.”  [What?  I guess he thinks we drink too much and wants to keep us under tabs?  That or he’s cheap — no, can’t be that, he’d just make more from water…]

In answer to mom’s question, he said he wasn’t allowed to give away the seats next to his throne.  That was up to his father (the power behind the throne, if you will — a puppet master of sorts).  Disappointing.  **a single tear**

But what made it worse was that somehow all the other guys heard about what mom had asked for and got really mad at us.  Jesus broke it up (just as they were about to give John a swirly) and talked about how the Gentiles abuse their authority and we shouldn’t do that.  He said whichever one of us wanted to be great had to first be a servant.  And as if he wasn’t making little enough sense already, he said we’d have to become slaves if we wanted to be first.  He’s always talking in riddles like that.  He said something about how he came to serve people, and that he’d later be kidnapped and held for ransom.  The twelve of us talked about it just a little while the guys untied mine and John’s hands, but we decided to get together and talk more later — out of Jesus’ earshot.  I’m on my way to that meeting now.  Running late — write more later…

* This post is the second in a “dear diary” series from Matthew 20.  The first post is here.



Filed under dear diary

15 responses to “dear diary — 9th day of nisan

  1. Pingback: dear diary — 7th day of nisan « aliens and strangers

  2. “Mom” definitely did not endear James and John to the ten! I’ve always believed she presumed there should be an inside track since she had helped care for Jesus’ needs (maybe even underwriting some of the expenses of Jesus’ traveling ministry) Matthew 27:55-56; Mark 15:40.

  3. JMF

    Brett man, you are truly a great (and creative) writer. I am going to send this to people — this is great. The best part was about Zeb trying to convince them that wine actually means grape juice, lol

  4. This is really great! I’m so glad I clicked on this post today.

    2 questions:

    1) Why do I call you James if you’re name is Brett Harrison?

    2) Do you actually think wine meant grape juice when Jesus drank it or were you just joking about other people thinking this? Just curious.

    • jessica, you mean you don’t click on all my posts? just kidding.

      2 answers:

      1) my name is james brett harrison. in a move towards being called j.b. when i’m an old man, i use jamesbrett as a screen name and on my blog. though most days i go by “brett.”

      2) i believe Jesus drank real wine… with alcohol in it. i don’t think luke 7:30-35 makes sense otherwise. also, it seems obvious the whole fruit juice conspiracy was sought out and invented to prove a belief someone already held. [i will acknowledge, however, the possibility of wine in JC’s day not having as much alcohol in it…]

  5. This is so refreshing to read! I love it!
    It is funny because just a few days before I read your first diary post I was wondering what kind of guy Jesus would be if he lived today… 🙂
    How would he speak and how would he reach out to people. Interesting thought!

    …in any way, you should consider writing a book – you are very creative! 🙂

    • i’m glad you enjoy reading, sarah. makes it all the more worthwhile for me. as for writing a book, that is one of my dreams. but i think it’ll be many, many years down the road.

  6. Daniel

    I kept trying to figure out why you thought Jesus was pretty and I was offended for his sake. Then I realized you were saying that he was a pretty Little guy not a Pretty little guy.

  7. Pingback: dear diary — 10th day of nisan « aliens and strangers

  8. Pingback: dear diary — friday, july 16 « aliens and strangers

  9. Pingback: not to bring a sword, but a piece | aliens and strangers

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