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Peace & Pieces - January 19, 2024

For the next several weeks, our gospel readings are from the Gospel according to Mark. The New Oxford Annotated Bible states Mark’s gospel is “generally recognized as the earliest attempt to reduce the apostolic tradition concerning Jesus the Messiah to written form.” It was likely written within ten years prior to the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD. Ancient tradition ascribes it to the apostle John Mark as a summary of Peter’s preaching in and around Rome.

Mark’s gospel is the shortest of the four gospels and depicts Jesus as being almost constantly active. There is a sense of urgency throughout this account of Jesus’ life and work, and on Sunday, we hear him call four disciples. Immediately, they drop everything and follow him.

This sense of urgency reminds me of a favorite movie of mine, When Harry Met Sally, starring Meg Ryan and Billy Crystal. Harry and Sally have been friends for more than a decade when Harry realizes he is in love with Sally. She tries to brush him off, but he won’t leave her alone. “When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”

Likewise, when it comes to following Jesus, there is no time to waste. Jesus calls us, and he wants an immediate response. God’s kingdom is at hand, and we are needed to welcome and proclaim it to all people. We need to get others involved and, in a world fraught with conflict, angst, and heartbreak, there is no time to waste to share the good news of hope and help!

+Pastor Lori


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