Today we celebrate the Feast of Saint Mark the Evangelist. He was one of the early Christians, and likely knew Jesus in real life. When he was young, he traveled with Saint Paul on his first missionary journey, but at some point he turned around and went back home. He later went on to write the first of the four Gospels.
A lot happened to Saint Mark between the time he essentially backpedaled on a mission he had committed to and the time he wrote down the Gospel. While we don’t know most of the details of what happened, we can be assured that a few things did happen. Saint Mark allowed his heart to be converted and strengthened in the Lord.
Who hasn't felt the hot sting of embarrassment when they realized they’ve failed? Who hasn’t felt ashamed or discouraged by past mistakes or sins? None of us has a perfect track record.
I know how easy it is to dwell on my errors and think, how can God use me? But I also know this, what is stopping God from using me is not my long list of mistakes, but my unwillingness to turn my heart to Him again, and again, and again.
Just like Saint Mark needed some time and courage to follow the Lord, I might need that, too. And just as Saint Mark heard the call from Jesus to "go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature" (Mark 16:15), He is calling me, too.
Thank goodness for a gentle and patient Father Who is willing to wait for me.
He is waiting for you, too, sister. Open your heart to Him today.
Jacqueline Skemp is a daughter, sister, wife, and mother who endures living in Minnesota after leaving California for her one true love. She is a contributing author to our children's devotional prayer book called Rise Up. You can find out more about her here.