“Immediately he made his disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while he dismissed the crowd and after he had taken leave of them, he went up on the mountain to pray.”
– Mark 6:45:46 (ESV)
My perspective of time has changed dramatically since the increased isolation brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. Before this dramatic change came about, it seemed I never had enough time. Now, there are days when there is too much of it. So, what happened? Each day is still made up of twenty-four hours. What happened is that many of the things I chose to spend my time on have been removed from my life. Teaching and coaching routines have been altered dramatically. Professional, college and high school sports have been put on hold. There is little worth my time on television, and you can only read so much in one day. Workouts have been reduced to walks in the neighborhood and working in the yard. One by-product of all this extra time is that I have begun to spend more time with the Lord. Morning devotions and Bible study start my mornings. The most dramatic change however, has come in the area of prayer and quiet time. I have found that not only do I enjoy this time, I need this time. It has become a priority. No hurry, no distractions, just me and God.
Jesus certainly knew the importance of spending time with His Heavenly Father. As we read through the Gospels, most of us agree that Jesus’ schedule was demanding. One such time was when He fed 5,000 men and their families. He did it with a mere five loaves of bread and two fish. The people ate all they wanted and there were still twelve baskets of bread and fish left over. Jesus had a way of attracting attention and there were crowds everywhere He went. The demands of His time were never-ending. How tired Jesus must have gotten physically and mentally. It was in those times of weariness that Jesus realized the importance of prayer. One-on-one time with God in the wilderness or in the mountains was required to bring order back into a life that was filled with activity. Jesus knew the importance of being in His Father’s presence. He knew how critical it was to set that time aside. No hurry, no distractions, just Jesus and His Father.
Heavenly Father, thank You for showing me the importance of prayer. Help me today to get away from my activity and spend one-on-one time with You. Amen.