“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”
Could there be any nine words we need to hear more?
“But Jesus”—we need to realize that taking cues from Jesus will have us swimming up stream. Everyone was clamoring for a piece of Him, yet He took paddle in hand, and did the hard work of getting alone. Will you?
“Often”—how often we don’t know. He does it again in chapter 6, right before He chooses the disciples. Right before he puts in place the corner stones for the entire future of Christianity! Let’s just say it wasn’t hit or miss, but regular, and when God had something monumental to say, He was there to receive it. Will you be there?
“Withdrew”—how strong is your will when it comes to deciding to act independently? Jesus’ intended to hike up the mountain, and He did it. Will you?
“To Lonely Places”—It’s not physical laws the govern focus, but heart attitude. The other day an old woman was locked in prayer on the 8:02 express, head lifted to heaven and lips moving, while silver strands of light danced across her ancient face. Squeezed between two sleeping commuters, she had found her ‘lonely place.’ Have you?
“And Prayed”—Several times over the past year Jesus has asked me; “when will you get it, that there’s nothing more important than prayer in keeping your love alive?” The great goal of Satan is to keep the saints pre-occupied. That way, activity will replace intimacy, and indecision will replace courage.