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Year B, Ordinary 16 (Proper 11, Pentecost +9), 2018 – R and R

July 17, 2018 / Molly Douthett / Ordinary Time

Greetings!! About three weeks ago, I began to get a bit worried about attendance at my church; we were dwindling pretty badly. Then for the past two weeks, our levels have returned to normal. I guess everyone scheduled time away at the same time and they are all back now! If your congregation is on the larger size, you may not notice when many people go on vacation all at once, but for us smaller flocks, the holes are obvious. Everyone needs time away, though; it’s important to stop from time to time and take sabbath rest. In the Gospel passage for today, Jesus calls the disciples away to a “deserted place” to rest a while. Yet, human need doesn’t stick to timetables and vacation dates; Jesus saw the great need among people rushing to meet him as he and the disciples neared the shore, and his compassion moved him to do what he could. I suppose the point of the passage for those of us who are professionals is to make the time to stop, knowing we may be interrupted. Even so, caring for our own health is important – even encouraged by Jesus!


This week’s text is:

Mark 6:30-34; 53-56 [01:58]

Starting with WORD smart, we suggest doing a first person account as one of the disciples returning to tell Jesus about what you had done while sent out by him. Three places mention the size of the crowd in this passage, so for EYE smart, we linked to some pictures of very large groups. Also for EYE smart, the way the crowds follow Jesus reminded me of paparazzi and that reminded David of a scene in the movie The Right Stuff. Jesus’ bowel-shaking compassion may be something to explore in BODY smart; think of a time when you have been so affected by what you see that you feel it elsewhere. We have a link to some MUSIC related to the passages for today and one clip of an anthem written about Jesus’ healing. In NATURE smart, we have some maps and pictures of potential places this story may have happened. We also talked about deserted places way back at the end of January, so you could follow the link below to see what we did then. In PEOPLE smart, a wee Princess has decided she does not care for crowds pressing around her and her family. We also have some questions you could use for group discussion. In SELF smart, try the special effect where you demonstrate how relentless the needs of ministry can be sometimes. 

  • Smarts – Word [04:23], Eye [05:33], Body [08:26], Music [10:36], Nature [11:02], People [16:11], Self [22:44]
  • Mark 6 worksheet
  • Links in Mark 6
    • EYE smart –
    • MUSIC smart –
      • Some songs based on this lectionary passage!
      • A song by John Bell “We Cannot Measure How You Heal”
    • NATURE smart –
    • PEOPLE smart –
    • SELF smart –
      • Jill Duffield’s article in the Presbyterian Outlook.



Image Credit: Photo by Erik-Jan Leusink on Unsplash. Used by permission.


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