Today is Monday the 18 January, in the Second Week of Ordinary Time
Oculi mei ad Dominum Deum:My eyes are on the Lord God.Are my eyes turned towards the Lord as I begin to pray today? Can I pause for a moment and remember that all I see around me has been made by God, and is loved by God; that God holds me, and all of this, in the palm of his hand.
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Mark.
Now John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and people came and said to Jesus, "Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?"Jesus said to them, "The wedding guests cannot fast while the bridegroom is with them, can they?As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast.The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast on that day."No one sews a piece of unshrunken cloth on an old cloak; otherwise, the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made.And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost, and so are the skins; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins."
Is fasting a practice that you follow in your walk and spiritual journey with God? Take a moment to draw together your thoughts and feelings about fasting…
As long as the bridegroom (Jesus) was present, the disciples were not expected to fast.During a wedding celebration the ordinary cares and duties of life are put aside.Where in your life today do you experience God as present, like this? In what ways today do you rejoice in God’s presence to you?
Jesus’s message is like new wine, exhilarating, radical, fresh.As you listen again, smell the bouquet and taste the quality of this new wine.
Christians look forward to Christ’s future coming.Jesus suggests we should fast in this ‘in-between time’.Can you talk to him now about why this might be?What form this fasting should take?How to avoid being totally caught up in the things of this world, and pay sufficient attention to the things of God?
Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.