Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the kingdom of God!” Mark 10:23
When I suddenly went from having $13 in my savings account to having a lot more, I noticed I no longer felt ashamed at the bank, but stood straighter, looked the tellers in the eye, and felt more self-confident and self-reliant. This change made me wonder: Had I made money my god?
The kingdom of God is a place of vulnerability, not self-reliance. It is a place where I put my trust in the goodness of God, where I surrender my life and will to God’s gentle, compassionate care, and where I draw courage and confidence from God’s all-wise strength. The kingdom of God is where I find God’s kindness and love in the people I meet, where I offer help to those in need when I am able, and where I am not ashamed to ask for help when I am in need.
“[Jesus] makes the deaf hear and the mute speak.” Mark 7:37
From Jesus, I am learning to listen to others with patience, kindness, and acceptance. I am learning to hear distress, anxiety, and grief behind complaints, anger, and blame. I am learning to speak words of comfort, encouragement, and healing. I am learning the healing of silence and the necessity of using appropriate words at the right moment.
Today I will take a minute to listen to my heart and hear the love of God. I will speak with compassion to myself and all those I encounter.
Jesus summoned the crowd again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand. Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person; but the things that come out from within are what defile.” Mark 7:14-15
God made me in God’s own image of goodness and love. Today I will remain in God. I will refuse to be distracted and harried by the negativity, blame, manipulation, shame, and fear that bombard me from all sides. I will let my true nature of kindness, patience, encouragement, and comfort flow out of me to help heal our sorrowing world.