A Time for Prayer

Mark 1: 29-39
Heb 2: 14-18 / Psa 105

Rising very early before dawn, Jesus went off to a deserted place to pray.
(Mark 1:35)

Life’s greatest teacher and healer
Always found a quiet place to pray;
Showing the power of prayer,
That was how our Lord began His day.

As soon as they left the synagogue, they went with James and John to the home of Simon and Andrew. Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told Jesus about her. So He went to her, took her hand and helped her up. The fever left her and she began to wait on them. That evening after sunset, the people brought to Jesus all the sick and demon-possessed. The whole town gathered at the door, and Jesus healed many who had various diseases. He also drove out many demons, but He would not let the demons speak because they knew who He was. 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. Simon and his companions went to look for Him, and when they found Him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else–to the nearby villages–so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” So He traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons. (Mark 1: 29-39)

Reflection

The Gospel of Mark portrays our Lord’s life as full-packed with activities — healing, exorcising evil spirits, preaching, and correcting His detractors. As soon as He had organized His core group, He immediately launched His ministry (even on a Sabbath), curing a demoniac in the synagogue, healing Peter’s mother-in-law, then attending to the problems of the whole town who had massed at Peter’s door well into the night. But as much as He showed His love and concern for His people, Jesus never missed the opportunity to find the time and place to pray to His Father. Our Lord shows us what it means to be a wholesome person – one who gives his time and energy generously and lovingly to others — but who also gives time and space generously and lovingly to the Source of this generosity and love. Jesus displayed this balance in His life not only for the benefit of His followers, but especially for us today, who place such a high premium in achieving so much in the soonest time possible. In the hyper-speed technology of our age, how easily we lose sight of the importance of spending quality time with the Maker of time.

If our Lord Jesus saw it fit to ‘recharge His batteries’ in meditation with the Father, how much more for us, who sorely lack the spirit and enthusiasm that our Lord possessed? Just as our body needs the nourishment of food, so does our soul, which needs to come before God “as an empty pitcher before a full fountain.”

Perhaps it is for lack of prayers that people become sick or are stricken with a deadly disease. Being possessed by an evil spirit is certainly the result of a lack of spiritual guidance and nurturing. Quite often, people only find time to pray intensely to God when they or their loved ones are already in the throes of a serious ailment. If only they had made daily prayers as much an important part of their schedule as taking care of their bodily needs, they would have had a more balanced, healthy life.

Father, as I start my day today, let me first thank You for all the blessings that You have given me, and may all the things I do today be according to Your will. Amen.

Comments are closed.