Daily Reflection
of Creighton University's Online Ministries
January 14th, 2009

Maria Teresa Gaston

Center for Service and Justice
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The gospel today continues Mark’s exciting description of Jesus’ early ministry.

I’m struck by how the effectiveness of his teaching and healing must have been a surprise to even himself! I feel this sense of wonder and awe the new apostles must have felt when I watch the young people I work with here at Creighton and see their ministries unfold. I see God powerfully at work.

To better pray with today’s gospel, I follow Ignatius’ invitation to use my imagination and put myself in the scene. I find myself identifying with Simon’s mother-in-law who is ill. What follows is my prayer after meditating in this way.

Jesus, I’m suffering no fever, just a bit down about my kids being all back in their respective cities of work and study (and one in another continent as an exchange student!) after loving Christmas gatherings and simple feasting in joy. In these colorless days of winter in the city, I find myself envying those who live with mountain vistas or lake or ocean vastness. I feel walled-in and long for beauty.
You rouse me from my doldrums Jesus. You take my hand and look into my eyes. Your presence is a warm invitation to assess and celebrate my strengths. I see you have plenty for me to attend to, Jesus. I rejoice in your presence and ministry in these parts, for your active calling-forth of others to ministry and your powerful teaching and healing work, your vision and hunger for justice. I’ll get up, get going to serve you and my brother and sister ministers. It is an honor to be part of your beloved community and to take my turn in ministering to and with so many in need around us.
I see you getting up early and taking the time to renew yourself in prayer. Thank you for that witness too. Thank you also for my companion in these empty-nest, cold, January days. I’ll invite John to take a long walk tonight and defy the ice and forces trying to keep us in!
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