Prayer: O Lord, pour out your mercy and draw me close to your heart.
Imagination: (Picture Jesus surrounded by the apostles and the crowds.)
For a brief moment, Jesus wants to be alone with his disciples. This foreshadows the second half of the gospel where Jesus spends much time teaching the disciples. However, his plans are disrupted and, like a true shepherd, he changes his schedule.
Gospel Text: (Read slowly, possibly aloud.)
When the apostles returned to Jesus, they told him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away into a quiet place and rest a while.” There had been so much coming and going, that they did not have time to eat. So, they got into the boat and went by themselves to a deserted place.
The people, however, saw this and knew where they were going. So, they went on foot from all the cities and arrived there before them. When Jesus got out of the boat, he saw the great crowd and he felt pity for them because they were like sheep without a shepherd. So, he began to teach them many things.
Thoughts: (Read all. Ponder the ones that attract you.)
- Notice how Jesus always keeps his apostles close to himself, making them return immediately after they complete their tasks.
- They must know Jesus’ thoughts and desires. Jesus puts off his teaching of the crowds because the disciples need a deeper relationship.
- However, the people have extraordinary desires to be with Jesus and travel on foot to be with him.
- He views their situation with great compassion. They are wandering sheep who need their shepherd.
- So, instead of teaching the apostles, he gives himself to the crowds.
Affections: (When one touches your heart, use your own words.)
- O Jesus, keep me close to yourself. Always draw me back to you when I wander away.
- You give yourself totally to me. You reveal your thoughts and desires. You offer me all of your time.
- Increase my desires for you. I will seek you and find you.
- You see me, Jesus. You see that I wander. Be a shepherd to me.
- You give yourself to everyone – to saint and to sinner – even to me.
Resolutions: (Possibly you might want to make your own.)
- Today, I will seek Jesus at every moment.
- I will let Jesus teach me.
Thought for the day: (To recall your meditation)
Come aside to a quiet place and rest a while.