There is so much to cover in these two chapters that I don’t even know where to begin. So, as an intro let me start with a question. What is up with Mark 8:22-26?
I have no answers or insights and would love some feedback. So far we have seen Jesus do tons of far out, crazy things including restoring sight. Why, in this passage, does he do it in two tries? It obviously isn’t because he can’t do it, we’ve seen him do it before. As with anything in the Bible, if it is there it’s there for a reason and I would love to hear your thoughts on this.
I find v. 24 very interesting: He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.” My assumption is that this verse has something to do with seeing things clearly but I can’t quite figure it out or see the application. Help! I would love to hear some interpretation.
Mark 9:32 But they did not understand what he meant and were afraid to ask Him about it.
This verse jumped off the page at me. After being called into discipleship this group of men have been traveling with Jesus and witnessing first hand the fulfillment of ancient prophesy. They have lived out the intense experience of His public ministry and are now retreating from the crowds that followed them to Galilee and were being drawn into an intimate, personal time of teaching with the Master. Take in that thought for a moment.
What would you do if you were being physically called away from your crazy, busy lifestyle to spend time alone with God? What would you do if he took you away from your family, your work, your routine and said ‘Come with me. I want to be alone with you. I want to teach you about who I am and explain all of the things I have said to you and all of the things you have seen, I want to equip you.” What an opportunity! Yet the disciples did not understand the teaching and were to afraid to ask. What a missed opportunity!
The hard truth of this passage is that all to often God calls us into a solitary place so we can listen, learn, understand, be equipped. And all too often we miss the opportunity. I know I do. And like the disciples, I often find myself listening to God and not understanding the purpose of His message. Because His ways are NOT my ways it is easy for me to be confused or miss the point.
And what happens when God sends me a message that I don’t really get? More often than not I chose not to ask him about it because I am afraid. What if he wants me to sacrifice something? Better not ask. What if he wants me to surrender my husband or my kids? Better not ask. What if he wants me to forgive or turn the other cheek? Better not ask. I would rather miss an opportunity to question, discern, and clarify Gods messages because I am afraid that if I do I will have to act on them.
I pray that God will continue to call me into the quite even though he knows that I will squander my opportunity to ask and understand. I pray that, in His mercy, he will continue to share His inner most thoughts with me and that I will learn to trust Him enough to question Him when I don’t understand the meaning. I pray that I will be brave enough to hear the answers and will no longer let fear stand in the way of my blessing.