Our Humble Amen

  • February 21, 2021 (readings)
  • First Sunday of Lent
  • Amanda Peters
  • Mark 1:12-15

    And at once the Spirit drove him into the desert and he remained there for forty days, and was put to the test by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and the angels looked after him. After John had been arrested, Jesus went into Galilee. There he proclaimed the Gospel from God saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is close at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel.”

    Opening Prayer: Lord, help me, as I reflect on these words, to humbly recognize my humanity and fulfill what you ask me to do each day.

    Encountering Christ:

    1. The Spirit Drove Him: Jesus went into the desert to prepare for ministry, which would culminate in the sacrifice of his life on the cross. He obediently followed the Spirit who drove him there, even though he knew that he would be put to the test by Satan. Unlike Christ, we don’t always know why God asks us to do things, but we still try to let go of our fear of the future and say “yes.” We trust that the Father always gives us the grace we need, just as he did for the many saints who have come before us. 

    2. Angels Looked after Him: Christ may be human but he is also God who is all-powerful and doesn’t need help the way we do. How beautifully humble it was for Christ to allow wild animals to accompany him and angels to wait on him as he suffered in the desert. In our humanity, we struggle to accept help for many reasons: because our pride says “no,” it makes us feel too vulnerable, we don’t want to seem weak, or we underestimate our own personal resources and think we can manage by ourselves. The Father sent Jesus angelic help. He wants to help us as well. We will lack nothing if we recognize and accept divine help in the midst of our temporal struggles. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Philippians 4:13). 

    3. The Kingdom Is Close: The kingdom of God is not limited to a certain time or place. Rather, it is presently at hand. Wherever Christ or his representatives are, there his kingdom exists. What do we do to help make manifest the kingdom? Let us live today with the full knowledge that we are an essential member of Christ’s kingdom. He relies on us to bring it to fruition in our day. We follow his command: “Repent and believe in the Gospel.”

    Conversing with Christ: Help me to humbly recognize my own humanity. I know you ask things of me each day, and I need help to accept and act on these requests. When I obey humbly and lovingly, every action–no matter how trivial or odd it may seem to me–is enough to make your kingdom present to others.

    Resolution: Lord, today by your grace I will pause when I make a mistake. I will take that time to recognize that you call me to humility in that moment, and say “Amen” to your will.


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