Print Version January 11th, 2006
More than the other gospels, Mark throws Jesus at us all of a sudden and all of a piece. Monday he appears from nowhere with his peremptory demands: repent, come, follow. Tuesday he is breaking Sabbath, silencing demons, impressing with an inner authority. And today, Wednesday, he heals, he silences and he seeks silence, and he prays. He prays and learns.
Who is this Jesus? If you only had these three days of Mark to go on who would you say he was?
I see him like Clint Eastwood, in all those spaghetti westerns—the man with no name—riding in out of the desert and bringing storm and stirring to all those settled lives. A mystery. An enigma. A force of nature. The eye of his own storm. Silent and secret at the core: with turmoil and tornado all around him.
We say of the Spirit, it blows where it will. But Jesus here is blown along and blows all in his path, only still in the night to feel out a dusty path in prayer. Following a hidden dream, a powerful imperative. From town to town. From farm to farm. Disturbing synagogues. Upsetting families. Troubling hearts and minds.
Speaking silence. Casting calm. Lonely but not alone.
And look how they look for him! Like they’ve been waiting lives-long to be so unsettled, so stirred up, so soul-thirsty.
Have we? … Speak Lord your servants are listening…