Continuing my lectio divina reading of the book of Mark, in chapter 5, this verse stood out for me:
“Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you …” Mark 5:19b
Jesus has just cast an unclean spirit out of a man who had been suffering for years. As Jesus gets in the boat to leave the area, the healed man begs to come along. Instead he is instructed to go back to his home, to tell the people he knows about what has happened.
This reminds me that sometimes it’s not easy to talk about our faith in Jesus to the people closest to us. We probably all have friends and relatives who are not believers, or who profess belief but don’t really practice the faith. Maybe they know that we go to church. Maybe we send them a Christian Christmas card each year. Maybe we even invite them to worship with us occasionally. I find myself asking, after reading these verses, is this enough? Have I really tried to tell them how much the Lord has done for me? Would it make a difference?
Jesus doesn’t say we need to know a lot of theology; he doesn’t say we have to worry about their reaction; he just says to tell what He has done for us. So think about it. What has Jesus done for you? In my case, I could say, He has kept my marriage intact (nobody can survive 50 years together without the grace of God!). He has enabled me to forgive others (thereby avoiding all the problems that come with chronic resentment). He has given me good friends in the faith with whom I can work toward common goals. He has made my life meaningful. I can’t imagine what my life would have been like without Jesus. I know it would not have been as good.
So, that’s all I have to do. Tell others, especially those in my closest circle, what He has done for me. I can do that. You can do it, too.
For more of my lectio series on the book of Mark see: