The demands of work, family, ministry, and self-imposed expectations often push themselves forward creating pressure and stress. In the following story, Jesus and his disciples withdrew to find a place of quiet rest. Instead the crowds followed, desperate to touch Jesus, to find healing. The story tells us that evil spirits kept identifying him as the Son of God. Where we might think this would be good, Jesus could see the enemy's tactic of trying to overwhelm and defeat him. Jesus requested a small boat be readied for him to give set-apart space from the crush of the crowd.
Jesus did not "need" the crowd in order to live out his purpose.
Do you recognize what contributes to your weariness and stress? What is it you need that might hook a pattern of overwork? What might be God's invitation for you?
Mark 3:7-12 (NIV)
Jesus withdrew with his disciples to the lake, and a large crowd from Galilee followed. When they heard about all he was doing, many people came to him from Judea, Jerusalem, Idumea, and the regions across the Jordan and around Tyre and Sidon. Because of the crowd he told his disciples to have a small boat ready for him, to keep the people from crowding him. For he had healed many, so that those with diseases were pushing forward to touch him. Whenever the impure spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, "You are the Son of God," But he gave them strict orders not to tell others about him.
For Reflection and Prayer:
What phrase or word spoke to you as you listened/read?
What does this tell us about Jesus?
What in you needs to be healed by touching Jesus?
How do you hear God speaking to your life in this text?