Do you find that sometimes your prayer time is interrupted? You determine that you’re going to read your devotional material and then spend time in prayer. But your phone rings or you see the light flicker on your cell phone and you glance at the message and before you know it you’re also checking emails or texts. You wasted away the time you had set aside.
Jesus had a prayer interruption, but it wasn’t his negligence that caused it. It was his own disciples!
You remember last week, (“Ministry Interruptions“) we saw Jesus teaching in the synagogue on Sabbath morning. The people welcomed his amazing teaching and were overwhelmed when they witnessed the healing of a demon-possessed man right in their midst.
He ended up healing people who were brought to him all evening. While Jesus was God, God’s son, he was also human. The strain of one healing would take a lot out of him, but to do continual healings would leave him exhausted.
Jesus often pulled away from people to be renewed by his Heavenly Father. In order to have time alone in prayer, he felt he must rise early the next morning to do that very thing.
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Mark 1:35
Did you catch that? A solitary place. He could have prayed silently in his bed, and may have done that from time to time, but he felt the need to go off by himself where he could pray out loud in solitude to the Father.
Let’s pause here to talk about prayer habits. My self-determined time to pray is in the morning after my Bible reading/devotional book. I’m afraid sometimes that prayer time is short. I think of my list of things to be done for the day.
I use a neck stretching thing called a “neck hammock.” It takes fifteen minutes, so I decided to pray during that time.
I also designate driving to an appointment or an activity as another time to pray. I find some of my best times is when I pray out loud. It helps me stay focused. Another time I use is during the ten-minute workout on the recumbent bike at the “Y”.
While these are okay, the most effective prayer time I have is when I’m not doing double duty with something else. I think that’s where Jesus was that early morning. Though he was tired, he knew where his great strength could be found. I always ponder the fact that, if Jesus needed that time, I certainly do too.
Oh, but here come his well-meaning disciples. They’re looking all over for him, not realizing their interruption of course.
Simon and his companions went to look for him, and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” Luke 1:36-37
That’s why he went early!
Let’s focus on our prayer time this week. I’d love to hear your experiences.
~ Joyce ~