Tumbling in the Sand
The texts for Sunday, December 4, 2011: Isaiah 40:1–11; Psalm 85:1–2, 8–13; 2 Peter 3:8–15a; and Mark 1:1–8
“The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.”-Mark 1:1
I think my favorite Gospel is the Gospel according to Mark. I’m really fond of John, too, but I think I like Mark more for a couple of reasons: it tends to give us the most human and raw image of Jesus of the four gospels, another reason is it is the most anti-establishment of all the Gospels, and another reason is it’s breathless story telling, stringing one action-packed story from Jesus’ ministry to the next with an immediately! It’s Mark’s favorite word, by the way … again and again using this word to imply the haste in which the story is told, the need for rapid response, the intensity and importance that the story has (you don’t generally leisurely inform someone the barn is burning down or that a baby is being born or that angels spoke or that God incarnate came and died and was raised from the dead).
The other thing, besides intensity, that these kind of stories tend to have in common is that they are the beginning of the story: whatever it is, isn’t over yet. A barn is burning…we should go put it out, or have a marshmallow roast, or something! A baby is born…and that child will have a whole (we pray) long life to live. Angels spoke … and whoever heard generally has some task to do to make things come about. And for Mark, Jesus lived, died and rose again … and so, what’s next? Because you see, this is only the beginning of the good news and the story continues with you and me and the whole church. God is still afoot! and our job, our joy, our response, to this incredible good news begun and made real in Jesus, is to get carried away and run and try to catch up with God’s continuing good news today.
Featured image from Arny and Amy Mindell’s Website.