Mark 6:30-34, 53-56.
Do we live our life or does life live us?
Jesus said to them, "Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while." For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. Mark 6:31
One thing people notice when forced to lockdown due to Covid-19 is how much time they seem to have compared to their usual busyness. The busyness is like a drug, an addiction; some hate it, some love it. Some people hate the busyness because they feel they are not living their life. They feel they are living someone else’s life. They feel that life is flying past them, that time is running out. Some people love the busyness because it prevents them asking tough questions about life, they like that they don’t have to face themselves and ask what is it all about? What is the meaning of life?
People can get very busy as followers of Jesus. Jesus’ disciples were exhausted. People continuously came looking for healing, looking for life. They didn’t even have time to eat. Even when they tried to get away by boat to a quiet deserted place for some rest, people recognised them, and hurried to get there before Jesus got there. They were lost like sheep without a shepherd. They were hungry and wanted food. They were ill and wanted to be healed. They wanted life. They knew Jesus had something and they wanted it, desperately.
A question I have been reflecting on is this: Do we live our life or does life live us? At first glance that question sounds like we are being hoodwinked, being tricked; taken for a ride, that somehow life could be using us, conning us, that we are not in control. Have you ever
screamed aloud, “It’s my life and I’ll do what I want’? We feel we
should be in control of our life, masters of our own destiny rather than
some mysterious force using us or stealing our life away.
What is more important, our life, or the life that lives through us?
Let’s add a couple of Scripture verses to our time of reflection:
Jesus said, I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. (John 10:10)
Jesus said, those who try to make their life secure will lose it,
but those who lose their life will keep it. (Luke 17:33)
Jesus said, I am the way and the truth and the life. (John 14:6)
Paul wrote, and it is no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me.
And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God,
who loved me and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20
What do these verses say to us about life? Is life something we can possess?
Is it really ours? What is this life that Jesus speaks of and offers us?
Jesus, the word of life, comes into this world opening up something to us,
connecting us to the source which is life itself, to God. God is more than
the giver of life, God is life, the one in whom we live and move and
have our being. (Acts 17:28)
So, I ask the question again, do we live our life or does life live us?
We are we one with this life. Whether we live or die, this life will
always be with us. Remembering that, even in the busyness,
may just be our salvation.
May this source, this endless life, flow out through us in rivers of living water. Amen
Photo: Galway, Republic of Ireland
Minister of Campsie Earlwood Clemton Park Uniting Church Congregation