Daily Prayer - week commencing 15th January 2018




Lord, when I am feeling lonely, remind me of your promise:
“You are never alone, I am with you always,
Yes, to the end of time”.

If God were trying to tell me something, would I know?
If God were reassuring me or challenging me, would I notice?
I ask for the grace to be free of my own preoccupations
and open to what God may be saying to me.

Conscious of your presence, Lord, I look over my recent past.
Let me be honest with myself about how I’ve been and what I’ve done because I know you love truth in the heart and accept me just as I am.

The Word of God     Mark 3:1-6
Jesus entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. They watched him to see whether he would cure him on the Sabbath, so that they might accuse him. And he said to the man who had the withered hand, "Come forward." Then he said to them, "Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the Sabbath, to save life or to kill?" But they were silent. He looked around at them with anger; he was grieved at their hardness of heart and said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately conspired with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.
Some thoughts on today's scripture
• In this scripture we hear that Jesus felt both anger and a desperate sadness at how obstinate those people were who ‘watched’ him.  It seems almost as if the man with the withered hand was being used in some way to test Jesus.   These people were so consumed by their laws and own agendas that they failed to see God incarnate in their very presence.  Their hearts had become hardened, their eyes blind.
• The Herodians represented everything the Pharisees despised so the fact that the Pharisees went out to plot with this group is an indication of the level of anger and hatred which blinded them to the truth.
• When Jesus asked them a direct question, “they were silent”.  What might Jesus be asking me?  Is there something which I am blocking out either because other concerns are taking over or because I’ve allowed myself to get tied up with other ‘laws/regulations’, important things.  What are these things and are they truly important – more important than recognising Christ in my life?
• Christianity is about loving relationships and not about simply following laws.  As St. Paul reminds us, “If I have not love, I am nothing” (1 Cor 13:2).

To communicate we don’t always need to talk.  Can I imagine myself sitting quietly with Jesus?
I looking silently at him and He at me.  How do I feel?

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.