Faith Daily | 23 January 2021
PRAYER of the WEEK Epiphany Two
by whose grace alone we are accepted
and called to your service:
strengthen us by your Holy Spirit
and make us worthy of our calling;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Mark 3:20-21
20and the crowd came together again, so that they could not even eat. 21When his family heard it, they went out to restrain him, for people were saying, “He has gone out of his mind.”
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by Meredith Scott-McMahon
To say Jesus’ ministry had been attracting attention would be a vast understatement. Huge crowds were gathering from towns all around, and their urgent need for healing of their illnesses, physical and mental, from this charismatic preacher was causing chaos.
Jesus’ family must have been alarmed at reports that their son/brother was seriously upsetting the Pharisees and knew this could potentially result in a Roman crackdown.
Did the family really think he was out of his mind? I imagine it was only in the sense that they believed he was out of his mind to ignore the danger to himself (and possibly to them) by continuing on this path that could never end well.
What would Mary and Joseph have really thought? Mary knew his true God-given mission and it must have been with wonder and joy that she saw her son develop and grow into this wise, compassionate teacher, leader and healer. But with what misgivings also, as the anger and jealousy of the Pharisees became a serious threat to his safety?
How would Mary and Joseph have been coping? I can imagine them both covering Jesus with their prayer and love and relinquishing him daily into the Father’s care.
Today, as Covid 19 rips through so many countries causing devastation and grief, I wonder how the parents and the families of the frontline workers are coping? They must be so proud of their family member but so fearful for their safety. I pray they will know God’s love, comfort and protection at this time.
FINAL PRAYER: From Psalm 15
O God, who may stay in your tent?
Who may live on your holy hill?
Whoever lives blamelessly;
Whoever acts honestly;
Whoever speaks truth from the heart;
Whoever keeps guard on the tongue;
does a neighbour no wrong;
casts no slurs on others.