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God's Desire for us Human Beings

This Sunday's gospel  is a healing story from the Gospel of Mark. It's one of at least eight healing stories in the Gospel of Mark.

Miracle stories like this one - a healing story - plus miraculous deliverances from foul spirits, resuscitations, and miracles involving nature - comprise over 200 verses in Mark's gospel.

That's more verses than the passion narrative -- the stories of Jesus' betrayal, trial, crucifixion, and death -- combined. 

Let that fact sink in for a second.  

Consider the fact that miracle stories are the subject matter of almost half the gospel prior to Jesus' arrival in Jerusalem.*

That points to a truth we often miss: God's desire for us human beings is for healing, wholeness, forgiveness, and joy.

Healing, wholeness, forgiveness, joy is what the author John Eldredge refers to as the "major theme" of the gospel. As opposed to the "minor theme" of the gospel which is sickness, brokenness, sin, and suffering.

Yet Christianity has, by and large, made the minor theme the major theme.

Jesus said (John 10:10) that the thief comes to kill and destroy, but that he came so we might have life, and have it abundantly.

God's will for our life is not quiet stoic suffering, but an expectation of miraculous transformation and an abundance of joy and gratitude spilling over into concrete acts of service.

*(Gospel of Mark, Donahue and Harrigan, Sacra Pagina, page 85.) 

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