Mark Daily Readings, WEEK FIVE

DAY ONE MARK 8:1-10

Can you believe it? ANOTHER feeding of the masses! The crowd had been following Jesus for three days and was now out of food. They could have left in time to get back and eat (knowing they were low on food) but they chose to stay. Now they couldn’t make it back without fainting. They were eager to hear what Jesus had to say. Their passion was stronger than their desire for food… their desire to be comfortable. What are you willing to sacrifice to follow Jesus? What is most comfortable that would be the most difficult to give up? What does that look like for you today?

DAY TWO MARK 8:11-21

The disciples have already seen Jesus miraculously provide food for a crowd… TWICE (6:30-44 & 8:1-10), but yet again we find them worrying about bread. They lacked faith despite what they had seen. Imagine yourself in their shoes. Would you have so easily forgotten Jesus’ provision? Why or why not, do you think? If we‘re honest with ourselves, we have all done it. We fail to make connections with what God has done in the past to what we need to trust Him for today. Take some time to list all the ways He has provided for you in the past and begin to make some connections with how remembering the past can help you trust God today (both with your life and/or the life of someone close to you). Think a little deeper: what did Jesus mean when mentioning the “yeast of the Pharisees”? How does that contribute to Jesus’ frustration with the disciples for still not understanding? What does it mean for you?

DAY THREE MARK 8:22-9:1

Again, Jesus heals a man in need, showing His disciples and followers His compassionate nature and power (v. 22-26). Then He asks the disciples who people say He is (v. 27). What were some of the ideas? How was Jesus similar to those people? What sets Him apart? Who do YOU say He is? Pray and praise Him for those things. Peter didn’t have a big enough perspective (v 33). He saw only the brushstrokes of a bigger masterpiece.  The strokes seemed rough up close, but if he had stepped back, he might have seen the bigger picture. This is how it is when we see things from our perspective instead of God’s. Even though we can’t always see the big picture, we can trust that He has our best interest in mind (Isaiah 55:8-9, Jeremiah 29:11-13). How can you begin to step back and look for the big picture today? How can you release the things that are still a mystery to trust His big picture even if you can’t see the details.

DAY FOUR MARK 9:2-13

Verse 7 is the climax of this passage. What do you think is the significance of this moment? What is the significance of what the “voice from the cloud”/God said? Jesus’ position as the Son of God seems to call for faith and obedience on the part of the disciples. What implication does that have in your life today? In what areas are you neglecting faith and/or avoiding obedience.

DAY FIVE MARK 9:14-29

This is a great scene of Jesus’ power in ministry. The disciples were confused as to why they couldn’t cast the demon out themselves. Jesus responds in verse 29, “This kind cannot be driven out by anything but prayer” (ESV). Prayerlessness leads to powerlessness. Practice praying today. What steps can you take toward making prayer a part of your regular life?

If you’ve never “practiced prayer” and are wondering where to even begin, here is some help:

PRAISE God for who He is to you and what He has done for you. Release your struggles/sin. Ask for His ultimate forgiveness and make a conscious decision to turn   from those actions (REPENT). Express any areas where you need His HELP today, this week, this month. Lift up the names of OTHERS who are in need of God’s healing, grace, mercy, hope, etc. Acknowledge God’s ability to EQUIP you with whatever you need to face today.

Breaking the Mould Reading plan and general series outline theme adapted from ‘Defiance: Challenging the norm’ Source: ministrymatters.com