Those last days are like a dream now. Full of inconsequential details, and of sudden changes, and of foreboding.
Jesus talked, talked, talked. He burned, alive, alert, in constant motion as his hands blurred through the air. He would stop only to gulp down water. The water was a constant source of anxiety, for we had to buy it at extortionate rates, and none of the water vendors ever seemed to be there when we really needed one. We could not get him to eat. Every day he was thinner, and he could ill afford to be thinner. All he would do by night was pray. All he would do by day was talk.
Every one of us got more and more exhausted. Listening got harder and harder. He had always taught intensely, now it was so fast we could not keep up. We spun between contradictions, misconceptions. We were always tired, always thirsty, always hungry and always tied to the need to keep him going.
Buried in the incomprehensible words there were jewels. One time he looked straight at me, deep, deep into my eyes. ‘The Kingdom is the only thing which truly matters. Stop carrying all those burdens which keep you from it. Give up all addictions. Give up addiction to drink, food, and to worry. That is a very burdensome addiction, worry.’
I had no idea how anybody could stop worrying. I needed to worry, and had so much to worry over, that I could not see how worry could be an addiction. For a moment I thought perhaps he had no need to worry. That he could perhaps smooth out life for himself and for us too. Then I saw a pair of two-a-penny-sparrows go off for sacrifice. So, worry was a temptation he resisted to bend all his strength on bringing in the Kingdom. I wondered what if anything had the power to send him pleading for escape, and what he would do if it did. Then he stretched out his cup for more water, and I heaved myself up to find a vendor.