Day 31 | April 6
Day 31 | April 6 | Mark 13: 21-37
By: Christi Ledo
Verse 23 admonishes, “Watch out! I have warned you about this ahead of time!” This sounds to me much like what we say to protect our own children from dangers they are certain to face, such as “Look both ways - cars may be coming!” Because, in our parental wisdom, we know what to expect on any roadway they may travel.
Jesus lovingly gives his children guidance for both enduring trials and recognizing false teachers that would arise before the end, because he knew that these would indeed arise. We must not mold Christian truth to suit ourselves. We cannot overstress one part of truth. If we overthink God’s holiness we can miss out on intimacy with him. If we think only of God’s justice, we may never be free of the fear of God. If we think only of his love, religion can become a fluffy sentimental thing. We dare not alter Jesus’ teachings to suit people or we produce a watered down religion. We need ‘soul friends’. If we are thinking alone, we run a grave danger of thinking astray. We are finite and God is infinite, so we can never fully understand every aspect of our faith this side of heaven. G.K. Chesterton said, “It is only the fool who tries to get the heavens inside his head, and not unnaturally his head bursts. The wise man is content to get his head inside the heavens.” There is a place of ultimate mystery, a ‘holy unknowing.’ Before this place we can only worship, wonder, and adore.
We live our days in the shadow of eternity, but this is no reason for hysteria or fearful expectation. Daily we go about completing our work. May we so live day by day that it does not matter which day he comes. Our task is to make every day fit for him to see us.
Until a couple of years ago, the Lord lovingly showed me that I had overstressed speaking to him in prayer, completely missing out on the intimacy that comes from spending time just being with him and listening. I began a rhythm of stopping for at least two minutes throughout each day - morning, midday, evening - to simply be alone with him; quiet, listening, and contemplative. The doors of my heart and mind opened wide to his voice. It was awkward and difficult at first. (I wasn’t a very good listener.) Occasionally it is still difficult. (Our world is noisy.) But this is now my favorite part of each day, and he is faithful to meet me on a nanosecond’s notice. In these moments, he shows his character and his plans - to give me hope and a future. It hadn’t been like this when I used to do all of the talking at our meetings.
All of life has become preparation to meet my King. May this be true as well for you, my friend!
Silence and stillness are such a gift. They can help us be attentive to the presence of God with us!
Wow Christi! Those are beautiful words! Love you! God is so good!!
“We dare not alter Jesus’ teachings to suit people or we produce a watered down religion” . . . great words of reflection for my own heart as well as for others! Thanks friend for your insight today.
Thanks for your meditations about this passage. Your words and the scripture remind me to stay alert for Christ’s return.
Thanks Christi for the reminder to live each day ready for Him to come and to set aside time not only for our requests but to “listen” for anything He wants to tell us.