Category Archives: Mark

To know the Lord

James Tissot (1836-1902)
La transfiguration
opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, between 1886 and 1894 Brooklyn Museum

Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here! Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” He hardly knew what to say, they were so terrified.
Mark 9:5-6

To look on the brilliance of the Lord… it is a terrifying thought and a compelling desire.

It is a call in and to me: I want to know the Lord.

Today I will seek the Lord in holy scripture, in the glory of creation, especially in the faces of the people I meet. I will listen for the voice of the Lord in the words of people in need, in the sounds of nature, in the silence of my heart.

Angels of compassion

James Tissot (1836-1902)
Jésus tenté dans le désert
gouache over graphite on gray wove paper, between 1886 and 1894
Brooklyn Museum

[Jesus] was among wild beasts,
and the angels ministered to him. Mark 1:13b

I have been in a desert with wild beasts that trigger old trauma, where despair and fear and bad dreams keep me thirsting for refreshing, relaxing sleep.

And angels in the form of faithful friends who listen and comfort, who pray for me when I cannot pray for myself, have ministered to me.

Thank you, Lord, for being with me in the desert times. Bless all the kind and compassionate people who help me day by day.

Make me clean

Christ and the Leper
Mosaic in Monreale

“[Jesus,] if you wish, you can make me clean.”
Mark 1:40b

Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean of resentment, selfishness, racism, low self-esteem, disdain, and fear.

Bless me, Lord. FIll me with your joy.

Looking for Jesus

James Tissot (1836-1902)
The Healing of Peter’s Mother-in-law (La guérison de la belle-mère de Pierre)
Opaque watercolor over graphite on gray wove paper, 1886-1894
Brooklyn Museum

Simon and those who were with him pursued [Jesus] and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you.” Mark 1:36-37

Let me look for Jesus in the eyes and hearts of those I encounter, in the pain I’m suffering, in the suffering of others, in distant or close companionship, in the quiet of prayer, in the holy scriptures.

Lord, let me trust I will find you.

In the name of Jesus

Poussin
A print from the Phillip Medhurst Collection of Bible illustrations in the possession of Revd. Philip De Vere at St. George’s Court, Kidderminster, England

[The people said, “Jesus] commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him.” Mark 1:27b

Unclean spirits attack unexpectedly and repeatedly and make themselves at home in my body and mind. It takes all my energy to remember to summon the help of the Lord to expel them.

In the name of Jesus, I command you demons of low self-esteem, despair, negativity, prejudice, denial, blame, resentment, self-righteousness, and fear to be quiet and be gone.

Lord, fill me with your love and peace.

Moving closer

Jesus calls Peter and Andrew

Then [Simon and his brother Andrew] abandoned their nets and followed him.
Mark 1:18

Today’s readings are full of movement: Jonah begins a three-day journey; the people of Nineveh put on sackcloth as a sign of repentance; in Psalm 25 we exhort God to guide us in God’s truth; Paul reminds us the world as we know it is passing away; Jesus invites Simon and Andew, James and John to come after him and the fishermen follow him.

What do my daily actions show? Am I moving closer to the goodness and love in my heart? Am I following Jesus’ way of compassion and peace? Am I inviting others to walk with me as I discover how to love and forgive?

Today I will begin a journey of kindness and respect towards all people.

Honor and respect

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you? 1 Corinthians 6:19

May I remember that, whatever our differences may be, we each house God’s Spirit of goodness and love.

May I honor the temple of the Holy Spirit mine or others’with respect, kindness, peace, forbearance, patience, forgiveness, and compassion.

Generous in forgiveness

Grigory Gaagarin (1810-1893)
Baptism of Christ

Turn to the LORD for mercy;
to our God, who is generous in forgiving.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD.
Isaiah 55:7b-8

The week has been full of stress. Today I feel in great need of God’s gentle comfort, mercy, and compassion.

May I also remember to imitate God’s kindness and forgiveness and to follow the Way of care for all of God’s creation, especially the people I find difficult to love.

Give it all

Common or Corn Poppy

Sometimes it seems that what I have to offer God and my neighbor is woefully inadequate, but I cannot compare my offering to that of others. Each day I must do my best to give all that I have to those in need—energy, love, kindness, compassion, listening, encouragement, and especially my presence.

Calling his disciples to himself, [Jesus] said to them, “Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the other contributors to the treasury. For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood.” Mark 12:43-44

Love thy neighbor

If I make the effort to love just one person today, I will help dissipate the anger, hate, and violence in our world.

Lord, help me to be a part of the solution to the divisions in our world, country, communities, and families.

Jesus replied, “The first is this: Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.
The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12: 29-31