Daily Gospel Reflection for January 8, 2014

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Today’s Gospel: Mark 6:45-52

It is still the Christmas season, and I am still picturing Jesus as a tiny baby wrapped in swaddling clothes. Throughout Advent and Christmas, the message of salvation is so very clear. Emmanuel, God With Us, comes for you and for me. He is born a helpless baby so that we can see how approachable God truly is.

When I imagine the Baby Jesus, it’s as if He is saying just what today’s Gospel says: “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid.” And I instantly feel at peace, as I gaze upon Him lying in the manger.

At Christmas, Jesus comes to save us.

But His love, His work, and His saving grace don’t end in the manger, which is made clear by how quickly the Gospels move from His birth and infancy into His public ministry and the signs He gives that reveal His true nature as Son of God.

Again in today’s Gospel, Jesus comes to save. When the sea is tossing the disciples about, He comes. He doesn’t say much, but what He says is powerful: “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid.” 

How often does life toss us about? How often does the unexpected disappoint our hopes and dreams? And in the midst of the tossing and turning, frustrations and disappointments, Jesus comes. Again and again, He comes. He comes to remind us of His great power. He comes to give us courage in the midst of life’s difficulties. He comes so we don’t have to fear. He comes so we can feel His peace.

Ponder:

Is there something in your life that is causing worry or fear to overwhelm you? Today, take a few moments to reflect upon Jesus’ coming as a baby in order to calm the storms of your life, surrender your fears to Him and allow yourself to bask in His peace!

Pray:

Dear Jesus, thank You for coming to us at Christmas! Thank you for showing us just how approachable You are. Help us to turn to You in all of life’s circumstances. Open the ears of our hearts, that we may truly hear You telling us, “It is I, do not be afraid.” Amen.

Copyright 2014 Sarah Damm

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About Author

Sarah Damm is a Catholic wife and mother of six children, living in Minnesota. She spends her days running errands, cooking meals and helping with homework. She and her husband Greg strive to weave the Catholic faith into their daily lives as well as into their family celebrations. Sarah blogs at sarahdamm.com. In addition to CatholicMom.com, she also is a contributor for WINE: Women in the New Evangelization.

14 Comments

  1. Thank you for your beautiful reflection Sarah and for your reminder to cast a concern I’m carrying into God’s loving arms. I was struck when I read this gospel passage about the very last section, “They were completely astounded.
    They had not understood the incident of the loaves.
    On the contrary, their hearts were hardened.” It makes me wonder how many “everyday miracles” I am witnessing in my own life, and how often I “harden my heart” and refuse to witness God’s work. Much to pray about today!

    • Thanks for the comment, Lisa! It was a good reminder for me, too, as I wrote this reflection—I do not need to be afraid IF I keep my gave on Him. I also was surprised by the last passage, that the disciples were so new to being disciples that they didn’t really get it yet! You make a good point: how often am I hardened (or am not open) to what God is doing in my life?

  2. Sarah,thank you for reminding us to “reflect upon Jesus’ coming as a baby in order to calm the storms of your life, surrender your fears to Him and allow yourself to bask in His peace!” Whenever my worries, cares and anxieties seem too burdensome, it makes me feel so much better to ask Jesus to take them for me and fill me instead only with His love and peace. I can almost feel a physical weight off my shoulders and heart.

    • Hi Deborah! Yes, it is amazing when we can actually feel Him lifting our burdens off of our shoulders! Jesus is so good to us, to give us that comfort and consolation when we give Him our cares and concerns.

  3. Thanks Sarah!

    Funny how God gives us just the right Scripture and message at just the right time. Thanks for sharing your reflection today, for I felt a little like my boat was rocking and needed to be reminded that the Lord will calm my storms if I trust in Him. I like that this Gospel begins with gathering, nurturing, sending and praying. Right up my ally! Caused me to stop and focus on Christ in the middle of the waves of back to work chaos.

    Blessings!

    Kelly

    • Hey Kelly! It’s crazy how the world can whirl and swirl around us so much that we “forget” to keep our gaze on Him. It takes daily reminders sometimes, at least for me anyway! God bless you, as you get back into the swing of things at work!

  4. Lisa, I too found the fact that their hearts were hardened after the loaves and fishes astonishing. They really were quite dense and our Lord had such patience with them, as He does with us. A reassuring thought! Reflecting on Jesus as a baby when worries press on us is a wonderful thought, thanks Sarah for that.

  5. It is I…of course it is…but why is that so hard to remember! Thanks for your words Sarah…they will help me the next time my boat starts a rockin! Blessings on your day!

    • I am with you, Sheri: Why is is so hard to remember? Let us help one another remember! So that when our boats start rockin’, we can keep our gaze on Him and not be afraid! Blessings on your day, too!

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