As you read the Gospel of Mark, it sounds much like the nightly news. The camera spans quickly covering highlights, providing a grand overview. Why, within the very first chapter, we jump from John the Baptist to the inauguration of Jesus’ ministry (baptism, wilderness escapade, the call of the first disciples) and proceed to see Jesus in action declaring and demonstrating the Gospel message through preaching and healing. Quick bullet points. Interestingly, I️ can tell…Mark is not one to mess around. Let’s hear what he has to say.
WHAT YOU NEED TO HEAR
Mark is that kind of friend who is going to set you back on track when your emotions begin to derail. He’s going to tell it like it is. A straight shooter. Maybe we need to hear a Mark right now.
Currently, I hear a lot of people pondering the “What if’s?“. What if I lose my job? Will I or someone I love contract the coronavirus? What if I have to homeschool for another month (Oh Lord, have mercy)? Is it possible for the grocery store to run out of food? What if the economy tanks? I wonder what Mark would tell us now. I have a feeling his message would remain steady, straight-forward and true. And we all could probably use a dose of Mark right now.
A FEW THINGS TO CONSIDER:
We have the Holy Spirit
As a believer, you have been given the Holy Spirit (v. 8) who lives within you to provide peace and comfort. No one can take the Holy Spirit from you (Eph. 1:13, 4:30). The Holy Spirit is your Helper (Jn. 14:26) and will teach you to pray (Jude 1:20, Romans 8:26-27). Amid affliction, the Holy Spirit provides joy (1 Thess. 1:6, 2 Cor. 13:14). But that’s not all, the Holy Spirit fills believers with “joy and peace” so that they may overflow with hope (Romans 15:13). Whoa! This is crazy, y’all!
Jesus suffered too
At the very beginning of his ministry, after being baptized, Jesus was led into the wilderness to be tempted by Satan. Look who drove Jesus there (v. 12). In other words, the Holy Spirit is more concerned about our holiness than our happiness. You see it happening right here. Jesus is led into the wilderness to be tempted when he is hungry and weak. Sanctification is doing a mighty work (Gal. 5:16-18). If Jesus was willing to suffer, should we willingly do the same?
We can personally know Jesus
The call is open to all of us, “Follow me, and I️ will make you fishers of men” (v. 17).
Prayer is important
Above all, Jesus knew the importance of prayer. Prayer means to talk and actively hear from God. After healing many, He went to the Father to get His tank refilled. He did not let busyness get in the way. Spending time with the Father was always a priority (v. 35).
We have a compassionate God
Most humbling of all is seeing the compassion of Jesus. As the sick and needy approached Him, he was moved with pity (v. 41). Pause. Reflect. God our Heavenly Father sent His one and only Son, Jesus, to show compassion to us. To enter into our struggles and pain, inflicted by our fallenness and sin.
And a leper came to him, imploring him, and kneeling said to him, “If you will, you can make me clean.” Moved with pity, he stretched out his hand and touched him and said to him, “I will; be clean.”
And Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him. Do you need a touch of Jesus right now? Are you struggling to make sense of life today? Consequently, the leper, recognizing his need for help, begged Jesus for healing.
Listen, I️ know that times are tough right now for many around the world. As a result, I️ have been praying for you! Rather than trying to fix things on your own or hunkering down in your home in fear, implore Jesus to “make you clean”, giving you a mind that is steadfast on Him.
Prayer; Dear Jesus, heal me. Clean me of my leprosy, the parts of me that are unclean. Areas where I️ don’t trust you. Places where I️ take control. Help me to hear your voice louder than the voice of this world. Amen.