In the late 80's there was a series of VHS tapes put together that documented the civil rights struggle here in America. The series was called the eyes on the prize series; and it was accompanied by the theme song that reminded us to stay focused and to keep our eyes on the prize. No matter what the people involved in the civil rights struggle had to keep their eyes on the bigger goal, not self interest, phony leaders or dead end ideals.
Now as we approach Psalm Sunday, I encourage you to stay focused and keep your eyes on the prize. Let's look to the text:
Mark 10: 32-40
32 They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them; they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. He took the twelve aside again and began to tell them what was to happen to him, 33saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death; then they will hand him over to the Gentiles; 34they will mock him, and spit upon him, and flog him, and kill him; and after three days he will rise again.’
The Request of James and John
35 James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him and said to him, ‘Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.’ 36And he said to them, ‘What is it you want me to do for you?’ 37And they said to him, ‘Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.’ 38But Jesus said to them, ‘You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?’ 39They replied, ‘We are able.’ Then Jesus said to them, ‘The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; 40but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.
Here in the text Jesus has explained the things that are about to take place, we can imagine Christ uneasiness and despair as he unveils these things. But the Disciples especially James and John two of his closest associates are focused on themselves and there listing in heaven. Jesus is facing certain death and they are worried about where their names will show up on a list, how they will be known!
Too often in our lives we loose focus on God, and what God is doing. Jesus tells the disciples not only some bad news about his death but when we look closer we see that at the end of vs 34 Jesus says AFTER THREE DAYS HE WILL RISE AGAIN! But James and John missed all of that. We must stay focused on God. During the best of times, during the worst of times. God is always at work. The trouble is sometimes we must go through the storms of life in order to experience God's sunny days on the other side.
Brothers and Sisters keep the faith, hold on, and stay focused on Jesus as we approach this Psalm Sunday.
Until Next Time, Be Well