How ironic that Saint Anthony of Egypt, a hermit who sought solitude in the desert, would attract the very crowds he was trying to escape. But attract he did—not just admirers who sought advice but disciples who wanted to attain Anthony’s same degree of serene single-mindedness for the gospel. Thus some of the first monastic communities formed, teaching adherents to be solitary while also communal, requiring they eschew the trappings of “living in the world.” The point of monastic spirituality, after all, is an intentional focus on God’s reign rather than the passing preoccupations of the world. How will you seek the reign of God today—can you trust in God instead of the “ways of the world”?
1 Samuel 8:4-7, 10-22a; Mark 2:1-12 (309).
“It is not you they reject, they are rejecting me as their king.”