Saturday October 28

Don’t lose the plot!

Scripture: Job 9, Mark 1-2

Mark 1:32-33 After the sun had set and evening had come, people brought to Jesus all the sick and those who had demons. All the people of the town gathered in front of the house.

Observation/application

Shout out to my son Michael for this insight.  On Wednesday night at high school youth group, he taught from this passage.  I had never thought about why the crowd gathered after dark, rather than coming during the day.  Michael pointed out that it was the Sabbath, and Jewish law forbade healing and travel.  But when the sun set and the Sabbath ended, people were free to move and seek healing.  Michael said that it was ironic that they had to wait for the religious day to end so they could come to Jesus.

I thought about how often religion keeps people from Jesus.

In this case, their concern for keeping the Sabbath (a good thing) had caused them to lose the plot.  Later in chapter 2, Jesus and his disciples are criticized for picking grain on the Sabbath.  Jesus replied that the Sabbath was made for people, not vice versa.  The Sabbath was intended to refresh and benefit us, not be a burden or keep us from Jesus!   They had missed the point.

Religion is often an exercise in missing the point.  We get caught up in the rules, in the fine print, and lose the story line.  When we do that, we’ll keep people from Jesus.  We won’t be the powerful attractors that God meant us to be.

Stay focused on Jesus.  Stay focused on helping people find and follow Him.  Stay focused on loving God and loving people.  Those are the Big Deals.  Don’t lose the plot!

Prayer: Lord, don’t let me lose the plot!  Keep me simple: focused on Jesus.