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Navel Gazers Anon.

11 February, 2003 7:15 PM


Kevin was doing Lectio on Mark 1:29-39. It grabbed my attention because I did a Lectio on it last week.

The verses that particularly got my attention were 35-39 as follows: "The next morning Jesus awoke long before daybreak and went out alone into the wilderness to pray. Later Simon and the others went out to find him. They said, "Everyone is asking for you." But he replied, "we must go on to other towns as well, and I will preach to them, too, because that is why I cam." So he traveled throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and expelling demons from many people."

I've always been challenged by the way Jesus took time out to spend time alone with God. I guess what has struck me for a long time is that if JESUS - divine - Son of God! - needed to take some time to connect with his father - then how much do I need to as a broken, fallen mere mortal!

But this week as I read this passage I was drawn less to the fact that Jesus took the opportunity for such a time, but rather I was drawn to the result of this time.

Out of this inimate few hours with his Father Jesus propelled himself into his mission, into the world. Out of this time where he perhaps caught a glimpse of the heartbeat of God he seems to urgently desire to spend time with the people God's heart breaks for. He didn't sit the disciples down and teach his inner core team, he didn't send his disciples away and stay contentedly in his own little relationship with his father - he straight away was propelled into action.

I'm not sure that on those all to infrequent occassions when I do stop to spend some intimate time with the Father that the same thing happens. I fear that too often I come out of these times in my own little world, thinking my own little thoughts, largely unchanged and unwilling to let what I've just experienced impact those around me. Basically I felt convicted that I'm a bit of a navel gazer - can't get my eyes off me...

I guess to extend it to a corporate level I wonder if what most churches do Sundays would follow the pattern we see here of Jesus either? I suspect that too often services end up focusing those attending upon themselves and the church and not enough on the world we live in and our response to it. Imagine if people came out of church every week propelled into mission, propelled into relationships with their neighbors, propelled into making a difference in the world they lived.

Imagine....

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