When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son.” John 19:26
One word made the difference — there.
The other disciples were not present.
The crowd was also absent.
This disciple was not.
He was there. He chose to expose himself. He let himself to be identified.
If he walked with Jesus’ mother, people must be talking about on how much he was close to the one nailed on the cross. If he stayed beside Mary all the time when her son was being tortured, the authorities must be on him with some suspicious looks. If he stood under Jesus’ feet on the cross, the people wishing Jesus’ death must have given him some serious stares.
The absentee disciples must have had real and true concerns regarding his safety. Or how about his brother, James? The one with John who requested to sit beside the Christ when he comes to his kingdom. He is nowhere near his brother during this time.
What we know clearly is this — the disciple whom Jesus loved, defied all these. He may have no recourse if and when they would come after him yet he knows this was the best time to follow his Lord. He may have not listened to the other disciples warnings, yet he listened to the Lord’s teachings to be faithful until the end.
You can be like John.
Expose yourself as Jesus’ follower. Let yourself be identified as his friend, as his disciple.
Walk with him even when it’s not popular. Be there for Jesus when nobody else is. Stand under him when everybody are over him.
You can make a difference in this life.
Just be there.