Friday, June 24, 2011
Retreat with Mark
I made my retreat last week with four friends. We shared our personal reflections on the Gospel of Mark.
The Kingdom of God is so central to Jesus' preaching. I wonder whether it could be like the notion of a divine dimension that has been enriching my relationship with God. When Jesus announces at the beginning of the Gospel that the Kingdom or Reign of God "has drawn near," could it be more physical nearness than temporal? The common translation "The Kingdom of God is at hand" makes it sound like you can touch it.
Reading Jesus' attacks on the religious leaders of his day made me wonder if today's religious leaders see those attacks aimed at them. Then I read of Jesus' anger and frustration with the disciples' being so dense and I wonder what there is in me that fails, like the disciples, to grasp the way of Jesus through suffering to triumph. I think it's Ray Brown who says somewhere that the theme of the whole of Mark's Gospel is that Jesus accomplishes what he came to do despite the stupidity of the apostles.
As I compare the passion of Jesus to the things that upset and anger me, mine seem so puny. I see Jesus in the garden surrender to God's will and ask that he might help me to let go and accept what I cannot change.