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Daily Prayer - 2015-01-27

Presence

Dear Lord, you have called me by my name.
You have carved me in the palm of your hand.
May I grow in trust and never give in to despair.

Freedom

Lord, you created me to live in freedom.
Mostly I take this gift for granted.
Inspire me to live in the freedom you intended,
with a heart untroubled and with complete trust in you.

Consciousness

We all need to take time out from our daily chores.
We know that our bodies need a rest.
When we come into your presence, Lord,
our hearts and minds are refreshed, our spirits lifted.

The Word of God

Mark 3:31-35

The mother and brothers of Jesus arrived and, standing outside, sent in a message asking for him. A crowd was sitting round him at the time the message was passed to him, ‘Your mother and brothers and sisters are outside asking for you.’ He replied, ‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ And looking round at those sitting in a circle about him, he said, ‘Here are my mother and my brothers. Anyone who does the will of God, that person is my brother and sister and mother.’

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • Jesus is still in the house, surrounded by a crowd. His family arrive on the scene but they cannot get near him. We already know that they disapprove of what he is doing and want to restrain him. Some in the crowd alert Jesus to their presence outside. But Jesus remains inside with his disciples (for safety?) and uses the occasion to give a radical (subversive?) teaching on the meaning of family.
  • An increasing gulf is opening up between Jesus’ natural family (outside) and his family of faith, i.e. all who do the will of God (inside). Tension is inevitable between the two. But is the gulf unbridgeable? Might some in his natural family be doing the will of God? Where does Mary stand in all of this? She too is kept outside. What do you make of Jesus’ actions and teaching in this passage?

Conversation

I begin to talk to Jesus about the piece of scripture I have just read.
What part of it strikes a chord in me? Perhaps the words of a friend - or some story I have heard recently - will slowly rise to the surface in my consciousness. If so, does the story throw light on what the scripture passage may be trying to say to me?

Conclusion

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

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