getting out the Word

the 2nd sunday after pentecost

the PRAYER …

All-powerful God, in Jesus Christ you turned death into life and defeat into victory. Increase our faith and trust in him, that we may triumph over all evil in the strength of the same Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

the READING …

[Jesus went home;] and the crowd came together again, so that [Jesus and the disciples] could not even eat. When his family heard it, they went out to restrain him, for people were saying, “He has gone out of his mind.” mark 3:20-35

the DEVOTION …

It’s an interesting word, the word ‘ecstasy.’ It comes from a Greek word that means, literally, ‘standing out of.’ And it’s the word used by the crowd in verse twenty-one to describe Jesus. “He has gone out of his mind.” They said he was outside, he was beside, himself! We read the passage and assume some kind of religious psychosis. Messiah complex. Jerusalem Syndrome. Delusions of grandeur. But what if it isn’t so much psychological as it is inspirational?

Thinking outside the box? Going beyond a comfort zone? Being creative! Original! Just because it sounds exciting doesn’t mean it’s any less dangerous. Ventures unending? Paths untrodden? Perils unknown? Standing outside always leads us into a wilderness between what’s-been and what’s-not-yet. Standing outside leaves us wondering in a wasteland between where-we’ve-been and god-alone-knows. And doing that can, definitely, be a sign that we, too, are going out of our minds.

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