Posted by Paul Edwards (Fr. Paul) on Jan 26, 2012 | Comments (0)

EPIPHANY V Mark 1:29-39. "Jesus prayed"

Rational understanding acts on its feelings about what happens. Spiritual understanding acts on how it feels in what happens.

In today's Scripture, when we think of Jesus praying, we think of him asking God whether he should move on to preach the Kingdom or stay to heal in Capernaum. The Apostles were delighted with the results of the healing. They could establish a healing station right there. People from all over the world would come to be healed. Why not stay?

To better understand these verses we need to go back a bit. Previously, Jesus had been preaching the Gospel of grace and healing large groups. Mark 1:33 That evening all the sick and demon-possessed gathered at the door. Jesus healed many. Early in the morning Jesus got up to go to a solitary place, where he prayed. His disciples found him there. They exclaimed: "Everyone is looking for you!" Jesus replied, "Let us go to the nearby villages so I can preach there, also. That is why I have come."

Jesus knew His mission was to preach the Gospel of grace primary and to heal was secondary. There were crowds of people waiting for him. They had walked miles in the heat of the day and the cold of the night. Some have had no food, others were in need of water. They waited for Him to do the healing. Jesus is letting them down by not meeting their expectations and hopes. How could He do such a thing? They will become disappointed and angry; some may not make it back home. What kind of a loving person is He?

Can you get into the mind of Christ? This must have been an extremely difficult decision for Him. Yet, He knew what He had to do. What if He went back to heal them? He could have spent the next thirty years healing people by the thousands. He could have died a peaceful death. There would be with no Passion Week, Good Friday, Resurrection Sunday or Day of Pentecost. All that would have been left, would be a small booklet on the teachings of Jesus and the acts of His healing.

Rational understanding would find conflict between the guilt and anguish over leaving those in need of healing or staying on to abandon His ministry. Whatever He did, there would be the pain of regret.

Spiritual understanding would know the difference between being in or out of the Peace and Love of God. In the Presence He could do what He was called to do without regret. Regret means God cannot do anything about what happened. We carry regret by hiding it with unloving, unforgiving and resentful feelings when out of the Presence.

The Presence gives us Peace, Love and Wisdom, not about the situation but in the situation. What difference can the Wisdom that comes from being in the Presence make for you in a difficult decision you may have regretted?

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