A distant memory

A Poetic Reflection on Mark 2:13-22


“Follow me.”

Follow me to my dinner table, where sinners, tax collectors, the homeless, the lonely, and the unloved all come to dine.

Follow me to the place where the tornado flattened the town and all that man standing in the rubble wants, is to find his cat.

Follow me to the one who still sits in the pew after church, crying, while everyone else goes to coffee hour.

Follow me to the corner where the kid hides in the bushes until the school bus gets there and runs onto the bus, because he’s tired of being beaten up for being/looking/acting gay.

Follow me to the house where the elderly woman is eating alone again, with her dog, wondering if there will be enough money this month for dog food, people food, and medicine, and when there isn’t, she will skimp on the people food or make chicken and rice out of bones and scraps, to feed them both.

Follow me away from the pristine pews behind the red door with the shiny altar rail and the cookie cutter pieces of bread that look more like fish food, and come with me to eat beans from a pop-top can with a man who thinks beans from a pop-top can are a gift from heaven…and when we gather again at the shiny rail behind the red doors, we can talk about what changed inside yourself from this time last week when you got the cookie cutter bread.

I get that sometimes you can’t follow me with your feet.  I understand there are issues like kids to rear, jobs to tend to if you plan on paying any of your bills, or that you’re old and can’t get out like you used to.  But following me isn’t always about using your feet.  Sometimes it is.  And sometimes it’s bigger than that.

But I can promise you this–if you follow me, however you follow me, you will feel yourself growing, filling, swelling inside– like wine fermenting in a new wineskin, even when you know you’re in the same old wineskin.  Unlike the wineskin, though…you won’t burst.  Instead, you’ll look back and see how you’ve changed.

Because, you see…

I love it when you follow me, even when you feel like you can’t keep up.  I’ll wait.  Patiently.  And I love to talk about it with you, even when things are not going well for you.  It means a lot to me.

Just follow me.  It’s all I ask.

 


Daily Office Readings for Friday, March 11, 2022: 

AM Psalm 95 [for the Invitatory] 40, 54; PM Psalm 51; Gen. 40:1-23; 1 Cor. 3:16-23; Mark 2:13-22

Image: The crowd following Jesus, as seen through the eyes of painter James Tissot, courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.


Maria Evans splits her week between being a pathologist and laboratory director in Kirksville, MO, and gratefully serving in the Episcopal Diocese of Missouri , as Interim Priest at Trinity-St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Hannibal, MO. 

 

 

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