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Mark 055 - One of Those Days

That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him.

Mark 4:35,36

Ever have one of “those” days? A day when just about everything was going from bad to worse. When everything you tried to do and say was taken the wrong way by everyone? Even the people you loved and trusted most?

I had one of those days recently. I needed to make some calls to check in on members of my extended family. My heart was in the right place. My motives were pure. But my words just didn’t communicate or connect the way I intended. Every time I tried to speak; everything was misinterpreted. They took my loving interest in their wellbeing with confusion and dislike.

Jesus was having one of those days too. It started with a vicious and hurtful charge by the spiritual leaders of the day. They accused Jesus of being on the same team as Satan. They accused Jesus of throwing out demons by the power of Satan.

I don’t know what was in their hear or hearts, but they certainly wanted to dirty Jesus’ reputation with the crowds. After all, they were the spiritual leaders, wouldn’t they know about these things? They’ve been leading the people all these years; can’t we trust them?

From there, it got even more personal. His family, including his mother, came to take him away. If his words and actions weren’t bad enough, Jesus was surrounded by the crowds to the point that he couldn’t stop and eat. Isn’t that what mothers are supposed to do?

I once called my mom after my job was eliminated, and I started to cry on the phone. Her words of comfort were to go see a doctor and get something to eat. That was the cure for just about anything. Food was the cure-all of life.

After this long and draining day, with all the things that went wrong, Jesus sees the toll it’s taking on the disciples and himself. He tells the disciples that they need to leave the crowds behind and go to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. And the best way to do this is on a boat.

A boat. The thing that these disciples felt most comfortable with. These former fishermen grew up on boats. They worked on boats. They earned money for their families on boats. They knew everything there was about boats.

When you’re on a boat, people just can’t walk up. As the boat pushes away from shore, you put distance between yourself and everyone else. It was a brilliant idea, it accomplished exactly what Jesus wanted. It put space between the demanding crowds and his small band of closest followers.

When was the last time you needed to pull away from the pull of life? When everyone and everything was pulling at you so hard that you didn’t have time to catch your breath? When the demands of the day were way too much for you?

If Jesus, God the Son, and the Son of God, thought it important enough to get away for a little bit, doesn’t it stand to reason that we might need the same thing from time to time? When Jesus wanted the best for his disciples, it involved getting away for a little bit.

Now, you don’t have to rent a boat to get away. But you do have to turn your phone off. You don’t have to travel a long distance, but you do have to unplug from the daily grind. Like Jesus taking his disciples away from everyone and everything, so do we need to do the same thing.

If you don’t come apart, you will come apart.

Vance Havner

I have a surprise for you. It’s true, but it might be a hard truth for some. God does want to use you, but he’s not limited to using you and only you. There might be times when he wants you to sit down, unplug, and get away for a while.

Yes, there are times of busy work. Yes, there are long days where grueling effort is required. Yes, there are reasons to work long and hard at what God has called you to. But then there are times of rest and refreshing. Times to unplug.

Our 21st century push for more and more achievement. Greater and greater profits. Larger and larger numbers. We think that we’ve got to just keep advancing. Advancing is good, but it needs to be balanced when God says, “That’s enough. Time to rest.”

Are you willing to set everything aside when God says, “That’s enough?” or do you know better?

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