“And they were astonished at his teaching.” (Mark 1:22)
“And they went into Capernaum, and immediately on the Sabbath he entered the synagogue and was teaching” (Mark 1:21). Enter our home, dear Lord, as you entered this city when you moved about the earth. Let this be a place where we learn from you, where you have the freedom to teach, where we present you a heart prepared like softened soil. Let our modern homes be like that ancient synagogue. Come near and speak your Word to us, while we wait before you in our own Capernaum.
“And they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes” (Mark 1:22). Astonish us with your teaching, Lord. May we respond like those in the synagogue, amazed at what you have for us today. Awaken our hearts and minds to react in absolute wonder to the truth you open before our eyes. Astound us anew with the familiar phrase; overwhelm us with portions of your Word we have not seen till now. May we carry the treasures you show us all through our day.
“But Jesus rebuked him, saying, ‘Be silent, and come out of him!’” (Mark 1:25) In like manner Lord, rebuke any part of us that does not line up with your priorities. Silence the wrong thoughts, the lies we believe, the indifference that preoccupies, the unbelief that demands center stage. Reprove the wayward habits imbedded like concrete. Admonish the defiant parts and make them flee just as you did for the man you encountered in Capernaum.
“And they were all amazed, so that they questioned among themselves, saying, ‘What is this? A new teaching with authority!’” (Mark 1:27) Let our hearts be a questioning one, a seeking one, restless in pursuit of further understanding. Let amazement at your absolute authority create in us a passion to know you more, to follow after you, to be unsatisfied with what we believe we already know.
“And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed” (Mark 1:35). Jesus, would you remind us daily that you made this excellent choice, that you sacrificed time, energy, and fame to ensure you were alone with your Father. Please develop this passion in us, to wait for you and to listen to you far more than we ask, until you become our highest priority. Help us learn to rise up and make our way to that place where you are waiting to meet with us.
Elizabeth A Mitchell
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