You Don’t Understand?


One of my all time favorite Sesame Street videos has Grover teaching his audience the simple concepts: around, over, under, through, near and far.  He teaches by running around a set of swinging doors, then showing his face over the doors and under the doors.  Finally, he walks through the swinging doors.  He then says, “Near” and runs away from the camera, saying “Far” from a distance.  All the time he does this he sings a catchy little song, …

Around, around, around, around,
Over, under, through.
Around, around, around, around,
Over, under, through.
Near, … Far, … Near, … Far.

 At the end doing his little jig, Grover is obviously winded from his running. He says how nice it is that his audience understands everything.  Incredulously, he discerns that they don’t understand. And so he asks, “You don’t understand?!!” At which point, he does his entire around, over, under through, near and far routine again, obviously fatiguing along the way.  He then expresses his gladness that now his audience understands.  But, they don’t!  So, again, Grover exclaims, “You don’t understand?!!” And so, off he goes on his routine again. However, this time, he falls over from exhaustion.

This reminds me of Jesus’ feelings as He dealt with His disciples. Over and over and over again, Jesus explained to his disciples that He was going to suffer and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again (Mark 8:31; 9:31; 10:33). He told them. But, each time, they didn’t understand. So, Jesus repeated his future. And they still didn’t understand. I can hear Jesus exclaiming to the disciples, “You don’t understand?!!” (Mark 8:17).

We can be thankful that Jesus was patient with his disciples, and that these things actually took place. For, in doing so, Jesus “became a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).

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