9 minutes ago
"And these signs will accompany those who have believed..." Mark 16:17
Today is the feast day of Saint Mark the Evangelist. He took Jesus' words to go into the world and proclaim the good news to all creation very seriously, even if he probably did not hear this from Jesus Himself. He accompanied Paul and Barnabas on their missionary journeys, and he wrote down the stories of Peter in the 2nd Gospel. It is probable that he was the founder of the Church in Alexandria, Egypt and its first bishop. He was martyred there. He died while being dragged through its streets.
Jesus said in Mark's narration that signs would follow those who believed Him. This is so intimidating. We can use His name to expel demons, we can speak entirely new languages, we can safely hold serpents, we will be able to drink poison and not die, and when we lay hands on the sick, they will recover. These signs followed the Eleven as they continued Jesus' work. They would follow us too if we would just believe and do it. Most of the time, we are too timid to lay hands because what if nothing happened?
What would have happened if the Old Testament prophets were too timid? James wrote in his only epistle that Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed fervently...(5:17). Peter was a man with a nature like ours, Jonah, even Moses who needed someone to speak for him. Yes, there is hope for us, if we believe, pray fervently, and go out and do His work. We can be Jesus' hands and feet. We have HIS Spirit!