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Tuesday 8 January 2019

Word for today

The Gospel of Mark 6:34-44

The Reclining One makes them recline

Before serving them with all goods and wealth, peace, and light, Jesus had them sit down in groups. Jesus uses a beautiful verb, anaklìno, "I make lay down, recline, lie, repose."
Anaklìnein indicates the lying position as when one is eating, it indicates thus the act of reclining to eat, staying at the table to eat, sitting down to eat. Eating in a reclined position was a Greek custom which entered the Jewish culture. Reclining at table was the symbol of a free man; a servant or a slave would neverbe allowed to eat in that position. Those who reclined while eating, those who could afford the verb anaklìno, were those who could be served, they were "gentleman," the wealthy, the rich.
Before Jesus, God the Father's Reclining One, started to serve His children with fragrant and unexpected bread, He made them lay softly on the grass. Before He revealed His wisdom in the Beatitudes, Jesus made the people lay down peacefully on a soft green blanket that covered the hill. Before He distributed the wealth of His gifts at the Last Supper, Jesus made the apostles lay down in the tranquility and peace of a laden table.
It is Jesus' peculiarity, His characteristic as God the Father's Reclining One, to make His children lay down before he lets them enjoy the gifts of His compassion and providence, and in this way He makes them aware of their royalty and divine sonship.
There is no moment, there is no human event which Jesus allows us to live without in some way making us recline in the tenderness of His presence. We will almost certainly never be aware of this in our lifetime, but  this is how it is, how it always is, every instant.
If we  abandon ourselves to God's hands and heart, we will never be dismissed during our lifetime, not even for a single instant, but we will always be reclining, protected, cared for, pacified.