After an intense time of serving, Jesus said to his disciples, “come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest.” I imagine laughter and lightness in their spirits as the disciples set off by boat on their wee break with Jesus. Perhaps like me, an invitation of rest sounds attractive to you.

Instead of a quiet beach the disciples find a crowd needing more of Jesus. Jesus graciously gives of himself, perhaps allowing the disciples to rest on the edge of the crowd. I am reminded that my agenda is second to Jesus’ and at times the needs of others. Jesus is with us and will lift the load to provide what is needed.

I see many invitations in this story found in Mark 6. Jesus invites us to trust him for rest and the power to meet unexpected needs and opportunities. He invites us to exercise faith for what may seem impossible. Overall, Jesus invites us to participate in the work he is doing and experience the joy and wonder of this.

This story in Mark 6:30-44 came alive to me recently using Ignatius prayer. It is one way to engage with the Bible. You may like to try it.

  1. Ask God to guide your reflection.
  2. Read a story in the Bible where Jesus interacts with people.
  3. Enter into the story, imagining you were there. Use your senses to hear, see, feel, smell and taste what is physically present in the scene.
  4. Allow the story to become your own story, if this happens.
  5. Notice what God’s Spirit highlights for you.
  6. Reflect on what happened and consider writing this in your journal.
  7. Thank God for what he has revealed. Let these realisations deepen your love and service.
  8. Share your reflections with someone.