I've recently been studying the book of Mark in my own private study time...which of course is not a lot of time because I have 3 busy kids and 1 busy life! I was drawn to Mark simply because it's been a long time since I've spent extended time in the stories and words of Jesus. See, I'm a professional bible study girl, but lately I've been in texts other than the Gospels. I've missed Jesus actual words I think. So I just did it...I dove in all by myself and decided to just marinate in the book of Mark and Jesus' life as Mark records it. I'm married to a pastor who loves to study and write, I'm a massive Beth Moore junkie, and I've literally done every Bible study written for women published by Lifeway. You'd think this would be easy or at least natural but I'm not exactly sure how to do this study thing on my own. I usually need a group of ladies holding me accountable for bible study, but I'm going solo this time. Sometimes I'll blog maybe, but maybe not. I'm 43 for crying out loud! I've been a Christian for 37 years! Shouldn't I be able to do this...it's time!!!
So here I go...
And by the way, am I the only one? Does anyone else really struggle with wanting to be in the Word and live life devoted to the One Who loves me more than anyone or anything, but just can't keep together? I suspect that everyone I know has similar issues but sometimes it feels like we are all alone. It certainly seems like the days I'm most committed are the days that my kids are outright disobedient and disrespectful, some unforeseen expense falls in my lap, and I eventually lose it before the day is done. Those days, as often as they are, are reminders that Jesus was just completely amazing! He had to be divine, because everyday was like this for Him and He stayed faithful to the purpose for which The Father sent Him. Granted, He never had children, but honestly the religious people and His own disciples were so selfish and clueless that they made everyday of His ministry the utmost of challenges. And they were "mature" adults! Yep, He had to be divine because He never zapped them, quit, went completely postal, or lost all hope...all of which I'm tempted to do on a daily basis. This is why I'm newly committed to studying Jesus, our only hope of sanity and stability.
Mark 1 begins with a title..."The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah...". This was the beginning of Jesus' ministry proper, and yet I'm realizing that it really was turning the corner toward the actual end of His earthly life. Mark doesn't start with Jesus' birth, His childhood, or even His early adulthood. Mark says the beginning of the good news was actually the beginning of the end. This was the beginning of a new revelation and the beginning of the walk toward why He actually came...Jesus' atoning and redeeming sacrifice on the cross. How ironic, and yet how totally like God. What we would see as the end, He sees as the beginning. Again, I'm reminded that the way God sees things is really "right side up" from His perspective. He looks from heaven and sees the reality of life, and I'm so often looking at things upside down. What looks like the end to us is almost always a new beginning! And I am so glad that we have the whole scripture, reminding me in Philippians 1:6 that completion will only be in the day He returns and sets everything "right side up.". Come Lord Jesus, COME!!
But just in case He doesn't come today, I'm beginning something new. I want to hear God speak deeply and personally to me without relying on Beth or Blake. Oh I hope I can be just a tiny bit faithful to this because I think it could be life altaring!
"The beginning of the good news about Jesus the Messiah, the Son of God..."