King David lived such an interesting life. As we have seen, it wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns. He had a large share of hardship heaped upon him, some, of course, of his own making. In today’s first reading from 2 Samuel 15 and 16, David’s own son, Absalom, is trying to kill him and wrest the crown from him. David and his retinue meet up with a man who curses him and throws rocks at him. David says, “Let him alone and let him curse, for the Lord has told him to.”
In the Gospel reading from Mark 5, Jesus has an encounter with a possessed man who for a long time had dwelt among tombs. He casts the demons out of the man and into a herd of swine. The people of the village are terrified and upset that all of their swine were gone. They ask Jesus to get out of their town. The possessed man is thankful, and tells Jesus that he wants to follow Him. Jesus says to him, “Go home to your family and announce to them all that the Lord in his pity has done for you.”
Isn’t it odd that the man WANTED to follow Jesus, but Jesus told him no. You see, Jesus had another plan for the man. He could still follow Jesus, just not in the physical sense. His mission was to go and bring Jesus to his family. And so he did. Has Jesus ever let you know that He wants you to go in another direction? Even when you think you are headed in the right direction? Some might say that God “closes a door.” That’s probably what happened to the guy in today’s Gospel story. But he was open to going wherever Jesus told him to go. Are we?
Father, help us to hear and to heed the call of Jesus in our lives. Close the doors when we go off in the wrong direction, and lead us to where You most need us. Amen.
On February 11, we’ll be launching the all new GusLloyd.com AND releasing A Minute in the Church Volume II. I hope you’ll visit the new site and consider getting copies of this awesome little resource for yourself and your family!