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.
Consider this. You and I face an assault against our prayer life every day. That assault may begin the moment we awake. On goes the radio in the bedroom. On goes the TV in the kitchen. Now it’s time to check my social media. Now it’s time to scroll through my texts. From there it’s time to climb into my vehicle to listen to a podcast on the way to work. After work, I swing by the grocery store with soft rock pulsating from the store loudspeakers. I catch up on the news over dinner. I listen to my playlist as I go for a walk. I pull up something to watch on Netflix before I turn in. The next morning on goes the radio in the bedroom.
When you and I consider how Jesus starts his day in Mark chapter one, the difference is stunning. When Jesus gets up, the first thing he does is go off to a solitary place, a place free of distractions, free of interference, free of competing sounds and voices. He goes there to pray and raise his voice to heaven. He goes there to open up to his heavenly Father.
Let’s give ourselves a moment of candor. You and I must confess to our Lord and each other that there have been all kinds of ways by which we have often allowed the noises and bells and whistles of the day to swallow precious minutes—precious minutes we might otherwise have spent talking to our good and gracious God. This is to our shame. And for it, we deserve God’s eternal contempt.
But that is not how God has dealt with us. Instead, he sent Jesus. On our behalf, Jesus maintained his prayer life as a constant, perfect priority. And at the cross, Jesus bled and died for all of our wasted moments—every single one. Now, through faith in him, all is forgiven, all is restored, all is well.
All of which empowers us to look at tomorrow’s routine with a fresh set of eyes.
Lord God, in Jesus I am forgiven. Move me to seize moments to talk to you in prayer. Amen.