Saturday, March 28, 2015


The Gospel of Mark is full of a lot of action verbs.  Have you noticed?  There's a lot of movement.  People are traveling!   They were on their way up to Jerusalem...   Then they came to Jericho...  As they were leaving the city, a blind man begged Jesus to heal  him...  Jesus entered Jerusalem.

Jesus and the disciples were always going somewhere, usually by foot.  I picture Jesus walking with long, determined strides, with His disciples sometimes having trouble keeping up.  They definitely had trouble keeping up with His thinking, with the direction of His mission.  Their thinking was always lagging behind His.  They saw Him feed thousands with almost nothing, and still worried about their own lack of provisions.  They saw Him raise people from the dead, and still wondered what He meant about rising from the dead Himself.  They definitely had trouble keeping up.

I can relate to traveling.  Especially now:  my wife and I are preparing to make the journey to our new home in Austin.  Change is always stressful, and even when we know the destination and it's somewhere we want to go, there is a part of us that struggles with leaving the familiar behind.  We're experiencing that.  (I probably don't need this desk/these books/these pictures anymore, but do I want to let go of them?)    I imagine the disciples were having trouble keeping up with changes in their very reality.  They were looking forward to a kingdom where they'd have some power and prestige, and Jesus was talking about death and sacrifice!  What?  Can we change the subject, please?

Unfortunately, I can relate to keeping up with the new reality Jesus brings to our lives.   He never wants us to play it safe.  He never lets us get too comfortable.  Just about the time we think we've settled in, He says, Okay, let's move on.  Time to go.  On to Jerusalem  (or Los Angeles, or Austin.)  Someone once told me, "Everyone is moving in a direction either towards God or away from God."  My prayer for myself, as we move quickly towards Easter:

"Jesus, thank You for loving me enough to make me uncomfortable.  Keep me close to You, even when we're going into new territory.  I want to keep up with You.  I want to be on the same journey as you~  because You always have good things for us, at the end of the journey, and all along the way."

Pastor Rick