Scripture Reading: Mark 1:9-15 Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.’ — Mark 1:14
John’s arrest must have been a bitter blow for Jesus. John was a mentor, cousin, and friend. Perhaps the arrest was the catalyst for the start of Jesus’ ministry. He surely had been working in some capacity with John before the arrest but he now moved onto center stage.
It is hard to watch one’s society imploding, crumbling inside itself as external pressures seem to be insurmountable. John had become an irritant to King Herod, chastising him for his personal misdeeds, and soon Herod would simply have John beheaded as a favor to his wife. Living in such a situation leads to hopelessness and futility. Yet this relative and friend of John’s, this Jesus, responds to the arrest by declaring the good news that the kingdom of God was near.
How do we apply that lesson today in parts of the world where there is little or no hope left? How do we bring hope to our own inner-cities where poverty and lack of opportunities stifle wellbeing? How do we live out being the hands and arms and heart and legs and feet of the Body of Christ in our world today?
Take a few minutes to ponder these questions and then literally write down at least one, maybe two or three, things you can do today that will bring the Good News of Jesus Christ to a hurting world. Perhaps it’s checking on someone who is alone and snowed in. Perhaps it is writing and sending a check to an entity bringing hope to the world, perhaps it is gathering all those shoes you no longer wear and taking them to a ministry that distributes shoes to people on the street. Now do it.
Prayer: Lord, enable me to be that part of the Body of Christ that you have called me to be and to do the tasks that are associated with it. I understand I cannot do everything, help me realize and actualize that I must do something. Amen.
All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of American. Used by permission. All rights reserved.