Monday: Jesus’ Authority. Mark 5: 1-13
‘He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!”’ vv7 ‘The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.”’ vv12
The demons inhabiting this man recognised Jesus. They knew straight away who he was – the Son of God – and that he had power and authority over them. For years, the man had been ruled by them to the point of having to be bound and chained in order to keep him away from society (unsuccessfully, we read!) but one encounter with Jesus and they take the only option open to them, running away as fast as they can in the bodies of the pigs. Last week we saw Jesus take control of the elements and this week, even the principalities and powers of this world have to obey him. Are you beginning to grasp just how awesome your big brother is?
Tuesday: Go and tell! vv14-20
‘Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”’ vv19
This man had just had the most amazing experience and his automatic reaction was a desire to stay with Jesus and follow him wherever he was going next, but Jesus said no. There are some of us who will, as a result of our relationship with Jesus, be called to leave our homes and follow him to new places but there are more of us who are called to go home to our own people and tell them about him and his love and mercy. Don’t ever think, though, that it’s not a calling. There are many people you will come into contact with on a daily basis who need to know what God can do for them and just as Jesus sent the man in this story, he sends you too. You are on a mission!
Wednesday: Through Jesus’ eyes. vv21-29
‘Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet.’ vv22 ‘And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years.’ vv25
See the difference between these two people: Jairus: A synagogue leader; a man; someone who was esteemed and respected by society; someone worth knowing and pleasing in terms of status. An unnamed woman: Female and therefore irrelevant to the point that nobody bothered to find out her name; subject to bleeding and therefore unclean; not allowed to be around people by law because she would contaminate them. Then see the similarities: They were both desperate. They had both tried everything else and nothing had worked and so they came to Jesus. They both believed that just one touch from Jesus would be enough. They were both right!
Jesus doesn’t choose to love, heal or save us based on our status or position but on his status and his position as the Son of God! When you meet people this week, try to see them through Jesus’ eyes and love them with his love whoever they may be.
Thursday: Who touched me? Vv30-34
31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”
Are you ever tempted to think that you are too small, too inconsequential for Jesus to notice you or want to listen to your prayers? Let this story correct your perception! With so many people crowding around Jesus, he knew that someone needed him, that someone had reached out for him and he was interested. It didn’t matter that she was unclean according to the law, it didn’t matter that she was someone who people would avoid at best and ignore as a rule. She was important to him. Do you realise that you are, too?
Friday: Don’t be afraid; just believe! vv35-43
‘Overhearing what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”’ vv36
Are you struggling with something at the moment? In a situation which you can’t see any way out of? Dealing with pain from the past or worries about the future? Come to Jesus. Allow him to say to you, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.” and trust Him as one who knows you and loves you more than any other to restore you, make you whole and give you peace.