As I was riding the train the other morning to work, for just a brief moment I noticed something different. The weather was gray and cold, with low-lying clouds covering the city. Our train was full of people who were mostly young professionals checking their blackberry phones and others simply staring aimlessly ahead. All of them were working for something better–trying to build their lives up. And that’s the idea, right? We don’t build our lives down, we seek to build them onward and upward. As I looked outside the train window, I saw a skyscraper shooting upwards into the clouds. Its top was not even visible. It stood proudly declaring to the world, “Look at me! Look at how high I am!” But in the same window picture, I saw a church, with its steeple pointing to heaven. It was not as high as the skyscraper, nor did it seem bothered by that fact either. One building was high and mighty, the other was low and humble. One declared, “Look at me!” and the other said, “I am here for you.” And that brings us to the Gospel of Mark.
Join me as we take a journey through this short account of the life of Christ. We’ll see how it relates to our daily lives and brings each of us to an important choice. Will you live your life for your own height and glory, seeking to insulate yourself by only being around the elite of society? Or, will you choose to humbly submit to the Lordship of Christ and like him spend your life low, living for his glory and purposes which tend to be more in the valleys of life than on the mountaintops. The secret is to allow Jesus and his Gospel to be the centerpoint of your life. This means that at the core of your identity is not what you can do (your ability), not what you have (your possessions and career), and not what others even think of you (your reputation). Instead, the core of you is something that is other to you–something foreign–something that came from the outside and has taken it’s central place: God’s love for you in Christ Jesus, made possible by the Cross and Resurrection of Christ. This is what we’ll be discovering together as we journey through the Gospel of Mark, experiencing a new identity that sets us free to be our true selves.