devotion, July 5, 2014

Good Morning! I hope you had a good 4th!

Mark 3:31-35

31 Then his mother and his brothers came; and standing outside, they sent to him and called him. 32A crowd was sitting around him; and they said to him, ‘Your mother and your brothers and sisters* are outside, asking for you.’ 33And he replied, ‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ 34And looking at those who sat around him, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers! 35Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother.’

Mark returns to the story of Jesus’ family, who arrive and ask someone to go inside the crowded house to tell Jesus they are outside and want to talk with him. Jesus, however, does not immediately get up and go out – perhaps knowing that they are there to ask him to leave his ministry and go home with them, back to the carpentry shop, and the quiet life of Nazareth. Later, Jesus’ mother and brothers will become a part of the group that follows him; but at this point, early in his ministry, they do not know quite what to make of all that is happening.

Jesus will have none of that – he is not going to leave his ministry, the vocation to which God called him, the reason for which he came to earth, because his family is fearful. He is not being disrespectful, but firm. Instead, he uses the occasion to make a point. He looks around him, and says, these are my family, my mother and brothers and sisters are these who are following me, those who are willing to do the will of the Father.

You and I are a part of Jesus’ family, his brothers and sisters, when we follow him, just as those sitting in a circle at his feet in the little house were his family. And Jesus loves us as family. And God loves us as our Abba, our Father.

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