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Friday, February 02, 2018

Next Day

There is a sense of urgency in the Gospel of Mark. Much of the action in this gospel takes place with a note of immediacy, and this story is no exception. After sundown, the entirety of the city is brought to Jesus in hopes he may cure their diseases and cast out their demons. We imagine it must have been a time-consuming task to heal a whole city. But the next morning, "while it was still very dark," Jesus is already up and moving. He prays and then urges his disciples on to the next city so that he may continue to proclaim his message.
Perhaps we should be engaging in our mission with a bit more urgency. We are also called to cure the sick in heart and cast out the demons of hatred and isolationism. And the time to do this is now, immediately. There is no time to waste in the mission of loving one another.

Loving Savior, stir up in us a sense of urgency to live out your gospel. Send us to the downtrodden and lonely, and work in us to lift them up from their darkness. Be the spark to light the fire for mission within us. Amen.

Katie Emery, '12
Pastor, Hope American Lutheran Church, Fallon, Mont. and Community Presbyterian Church, Terry, Mont.

Mark 1:29-39 (NRSV)

29 As soon as they left the synagogue, they entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.
30 Now Simon's mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once.
31 He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left her, and she began to serve them.
32 That evening, at sundown, they brought to him all who were sick or possessed with demons.
33 And the whole city was gathered around the door.
34 And he cured many who were sick with various diseases, and cast out many demons; and he would not permit the demons to speak, because they knew him.
35 In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed.
36 And Simon and his companions hunted for him.
37 When they found him, they said to him, "Everyone is searching for you."
38 He answered, "Let us go on to the neighboring towns, so that I may proclaim the message there also; for that is what I came out to do."
39 And he went throughout Galilee, proclaiming the message in their synagogues and casting out demons.

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.