Pastor's Blog

Spiritual Sidetracks

Spiritual Sidetracks

Pastor Matt - June 27, 2021

I preached recently on Spiritual Sidetracks (Mark 5:21-43 NRSV) and this blog is a reflection on that particular message. If you’d like to hear the complete message, look at and look for the videos section. You should be able to access it by Tuesday at 5pm.

Mark 5:34  He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace, and be healed of your disease.”

So who’s with me on this?  When my “things to do” list hits an all-time high, I tend to get pretty motivated to knock it out, one by one. But sometimes, when I sit down to take a look at it, I think, huh… I wonder what’s new on the web today? OooOoOoooo Instagram has some neat pictures, and OH! Betty’s family is growing up so fast! Thank you, Facebook!  

YEP. We get distracted pretty easily don’t we? While some of us are great at pushing through it, there are others of us who feel more like the dog in the movie UP who’s constantly saying SQUIRREL! And getting completely off task. Well, wherever you are on that spectrum, you’re not alone! Distractions happen to us all the time. Especially now when our phone goes with us everywhere and our watches oftentimes connect us even further and rattle and beep until we pick up our phones. Distractions are everywhere, all the time.

But in life, there are even bigger shifts that can best be described as complete sidetracks that pull us off the road we were on and into a completely new direction. For the most part, I think we’ve always seen that as a bad thing.  

In Mark 5, Jesus is asked to go and heal a little girl, and as he’s on his way, gets distracted by a woman who touches his cloak. Mark puts these stories together on purpose for us to see that sometimes the sidetracks are actually just part of the main road! They are opportunities for us to see a new perspective and opportunity for Jesus to do even MORE healing, bring about even MORE transformation and pour out abundant GRACE upon us.  

I talk to so many people as a pastor that share that, in life, they had a plan to be THERE, but are feeling stuck HERE instead. They were on a particular trajectory, and then THERE became unreachable. And now the HERE is where they are. As we see Jesus show up in the sidetracks in Mark, I wonder if it would be helpful for us to see how Jesus is present in OUR sidetracks as well.  

Jesus heals BOTH the dying little girl AND the hemorrhaging woman. That means that Jesus has enough POWER and TIME for all of us. No matter where we are in our lives. And further, Jesus said, “I am with you always, to the end of the age!”

So where did your life get sidetracked? What was the trajectory you were on that got somehow shifted? How can you begin to see Jesus with you in the HERE, and NOW?

Be encouraged, Sisters and Brothers, that Jesus is most certainly present in your HERE. And the Lord God of all creation will stick by you on the road you’re on, no matter where it goes.  That’s the Good News. Thanks be to God.

Lord Jesus, we travel sometimes in weird directions. Ones we choose and ones chosen for us.  But you O Lord walk with us, always, and you redeem the sidetracks and make them full of your Holy Spirit. Amen.