I also read the book of Matthew---28 chapters, in the New Living Translation.
I read aloud chapters 3, 4, 27, and 28 of Matthew.
While reading these verses today in Mark and Matthew there were a few things that I thought about:
1. When Jesus told Simon and Andrew, James and John to follow Him, they left what they were doing, it was an immediate response. These 4 men had a fishing business, we know that at least Peter had a wife, they had responsibilities, yet immediately they left what they were doing and followed Jesus.
Shouldn't this be my response as well? No time for even a thought to conjure in my head for an excuse, but to immediately say, yes Lord!
2. In Mark 16: 23 "Jesus turned to Peter and said, Get away from me Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God's."
I too have seen many things in my life from a merely human point of view.
I am reminded of another verse in 2 Corinthians 4:18
"So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal."
3. Several times I read in the Gospel accounts about crowds of people that were pressing in around Jesus. Not a small crowd but probably thousands of people.
Some people can feel alone in a crowd. To be in a crowded room does not mean that a person feels intimacy or comradely. And some people can be devoid of any other human around them and yet not feel alone.
My mother told me a story once of when she was a young girl during the depression years. There was a young woman that was physically handicapped, she had braces on her legs. This young woman sang a particular song during the church service, you've probably heard this song before,
"And He walks with me, and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own, And the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known."
All of my mother's life she never forgot the song that was sung by a young woman that by the world's standards should feel alone and bitter. Instead, she sang that song with her eyes not focusing on the congregation of people, but with her radiant face looking above her--she was singing to her sweet Jesus.
This is what I am talking about, intimacy with Jesus. No matter where I am, or what I am going through, or will go through, I know I am never alone.