Daily Scripture:18 Now John’s disciples and the Pharisees were fasting; and people came and said to him, ‘Why do John’s disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?’ 19 Jesus said to them, ‘The wedding-guests cannot fast while the bridegroom is with them, can they? As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 20 The days will come when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast on that day. 21 ‘No one sews a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old cloak; otherwise, the patch pulls away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made. 22 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise, the wine will burst the skins, and the wine is lost, and so are the skins; but one puts new wine into fresh wineskins.’ (Mark 2:18-22)
Almighty God, in Christ you make all things new,
transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace,
and in the renewal of our lives
make known your heavenly glory;
From the Collect (prayer) for the Second Sunday of Epiphany, Church of England
It is mid-January, and maybe some of us made some New Year’s resolutions.
Have we kept them? Or, have we already come unstuck? This year, more than ever,
we might feel like it’s futile. But new habits take time to form. In this
Gospel reading Jesus is asked why he and his disciples don’t fast, when others
do. His explanation says: ‘I’m bringing something new, a whole new way of
living. You can’t expect my followers to live like people have always done.’
When we turn to Jesus and start following him, our life is changed. Our habits
are changed, our way of thinking and acting. But, like all good habits, this
takes time to bed in. Don’t lose heart. Keep praying, keep reading the Bible,
keep practising kindness.