Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Reflection: Mark 8:14-21

Tuesday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time – Mark 8:14-21

In today’s Gospel, the apostles are a bit absent-minded: they forgot to bring any food along for the journey. Among them, they only had one loaf of bread. How was this going to feed all of them? These were men who had hearty appetites and they liked to be well fed. To complicate matters, they were out on the sea in a boat. There was no food to be had!

Jesus however was not concerned about their hunger. He was instructing them to be on guard with the Pharisees and to beware of the “leaven” of Herod! However, his disciples did not get the point of what Jesus was saying to them. They thought that Jesus was referring to the fact that they had no food to eat. Jesus and his disciples were on completely different tracks of thought. His followers were only focused on having their hunger satisfied. Jesus gets aggravated with their self-focus. Jesus pointedly asks them if their hearts are hardened!

Do you think Jesus also gets as aggravated with us as He did with His disciples? I would not be surprised! At times, I also become so focused on what I want or think I need that I don’t recognize the many gifts that I have received! It is easy to let our hearts become “hardened.” We want what we want and we may not recognize that Jesus is gifting us. This is true especially when we are hoping for a specific action or gift. We may be receiving blessing upon blessing. However, if our eyes and hearts are not open and attentive to these unexpected blessings, we may miss the abundance of God’s graces!

Today may we let go of our agenda of the blessings we think we need and simply and thankfully receive the many blessings that God will gift us with today! Most of them may be small blessings, yet what precious gifts! And may we remember to thank God for the blessings we receive!

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