Jesus's Ministry Begins

Pastor Kevin Rutledge - 1/14/2024 10:00 AM

Join us on a compelling journey through the Gospel of Mark, where we unravel the brisk and urgent narrative that introduces us to the life and mission of Jesus. As potentially the earliest of the Gospels, Mark's account—written amidst the tumult of Jerusalem's fall—casts Jesus' story as transformative news, akin to imperial heralds of the Roman Empire. Listen in as we explore the immediacy of Jesus' ministry and the significance of his call to the first disciples, transforming simple fishermen into "fishers of men" and setting a communal foundation for his teachings.

In our latest episode, we reflect on the profound impact of Jesus' invitation to his followers, examining how it inspired them to abandon their former lives for a path of spreading the good news. Our conversation touches on the growth and resilience of the disciples as they journey with Jesus, facing their own flaws and challenges. We tackle the common feelings of self-doubt and inadequacy that can hinder anyone's spiritual journey, emphasizing the potential within each of us to contribute meaningfully to God's work, finding comfort and peace in faith even in the face of uncertainty.

We also discuss the vital role of community and hospitality in challenging times, sharing a personal anecdote of outreach during a power outage. This act of service, providing warmth and connection, underscored our capacity to make a difference despite our struggles. In the spirit of fostering a welcoming church community, we consider how simplicity and small gestures can build hope and belonging. We delve into the importance of being a beacon of good news and solidarity, particularly in confronting societal issues like racism, reminding us of our mission to nurture relationships and offer a testament to resilience. Listen in as we share these insights and more, inviting you to find purpose and create a welcoming community in your own life.


  • First Reading: Mark 1:14-20
  • Second Reading: Mark 2:18-22
View Order of Worship

This Week's Reading Plan

Day: Reading:
Monday As One with Authority: Mark 1:21-28
Tuesday Simon's Mother-in-Law: Mark 1:29-39
Wednesday Jesus Heals a Leper: Mark 1:40-45
Thursday Jesus Heals a Paralytic: Mark 2:1-12
Friday Jesus Forgives Sins: Mark 2:18-22
Saturday Jesus Appoints the Twelve: Mark 3:13-19
Sunday The Parable of the Sower: Mark 4:1-9

This includes only the sermon portion of the service.

Reflections and Caring Conversations

Please use the prompts and prayers below to aid you in your devotions for this week.

  • Morning Prayer: Gracious and Everlasting Spirit, As I welcome the dawn of this new day, I am reminded of the call to leave behind the nets of my past, to embrace the journey you have set before me. You beckon me to step into a life of purpose and service. May I hear your transformative call afresh this morning, and may my heart be open to the new paths you are revealing. Grant me the courage to follow, trusting in your steadfast love and guidance. As the sun rises, so may your light illuminate my way and lead me to deeper communion with you and with my neighbors. Amen.

  • Reflection Question: Reflecting on the urgency of Jesus' call to His disciples in the Gospel of Mark, how can we, in our present day, respond to Jesus' immediate call to discipleship and service? (Mark 1:16-20)

  • Reflection Question: In what practical ways can we, as a church community, create a welcoming environment that fosters relationships, hope, and belonging, particularly for those who feel lonely or disconnected? (Hebrews 13:1-2)

  • Reflection Question: Share a time when your faith provided stability and strength during a period of doubt or difficulty. (Psalm 46:1-3)

  • Reflection Question: As we contemplate the role of community in times of trial, how can we be a beacon of warmth and connection to those around us, even when we ourselves are facing battles? (Galatians 6:2)