First Sunday in Lent, Feb. 18

Read Mark 1:9-15

From Marsha Brown Woodard

St. David’s PA, Palmer Theological Seminary

Life is full of ordinary days, where on the face of it nothing unusual has happened. In the passage for today verse nine begins with, “in those days, Jesus came”. It is direct and to the point, Mark brings Jesus on the scene without any angels, shepherds or wise men, simply with an almost offhand comment, in those days. We live in a society that often focuses on the glitter, the bright lights and drama, and we can be seduced to follow suit, but this passage reminds us that on an ordinary day we can encounter God. I imagine that it may not have been his first time to hear John preach, but without an entourage, Jesus simply shows us and is baptized. And that ordinary day became extraordinary. God showed up and said “this is my son in whom I am well pleased.”

Lent is the season to remind us that in the ordinariness of life we can have amazing and life changing experiences, that lead us to encounter God and being reminded that we are indeed his sons and daughters with whom He is well pleased.


Help us to set these days apart, O God,

for your glory and for our good. Amen.