“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)
Habits have long been recognized as essential to our wellbeing. Every life has a habit. For example, most of every one of us must brush their teeth early in the morning, as a habit. In most households there is a habit of greeting each other, first thing in the day. When you have a habit, you do not need to be prompted for it is part of you. Like washing hands before dining; those with this habit, do not need to be reminded. People who have got used to strapping on a seat belt insist so whenever driving without any urging.
The Lord Jesus had a habit, as we see in our verse today. It was the habit of waking up early in the morning to pray. Perhaps we may speculate on the reason behind this habit of his. First, the morning is usually in most places a quiet time allowing one to be alone without interruption and concentrate on a certain matter. Jesus, we may suppose, did not want any distractions when talking to His Father in heaven. Then, also, for most people when they rise up there are fully energized after a night’s rest. With their minds alert they can bring their needs to the Almighty God with a clear purpose.
Your life may have as many habits, but one which could be just as helpful is waking up early to pray, as a first thing. Psalm 5:3, says, “In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly.”
There is of course no time of the day God has earmarked believers for prayers. “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth” (John 4:24). Unlike Moslems, Christ followers do not have to fix themselves in one in a particular position and face a certain direction for God to hear them! Jeremiah 22: 23 says, “I am a God who is everywhere and not in one place only.” However, taking after the regular habit of Jesus of waking up early to pray, this one might be a good habit, worth emulating.
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, I rise up early in the morning to give you praise for you have been so good to me, and may you go ahead of me today, this I pray in Jesus’s name.
Related upcoming events
26/02/2024 - 27/02/2024 All day
“Who dares despise the day of small things, since the seven eyes of the Lord that range throughout the earth will rejoice when they see the chosen capstone in the hand of Zerubbabel” ( Zechariah 4:10).
The public life of King David is well known. However, there is an early aspect of his life quite hidden though we can get glimpse of it. The first time we get to know David he is a stay home kid while his big brothers are on to bigger stuff, like fighting with King Saul. “Jesse’s three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah. David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul, but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem” ( I Samuel 27:13-14).
Left home alone perhaps it was a time for David to bond with the old man Jesse. Maybe he sometimes felt idle and ignored. But there was something maturing in his life for the life ahead. For in the meantime as he would later point to King Saul once an opportunity availed itself, God was ironing out his CV. When he offered to take on Goliath and Saul hesitated, he quickly shot back: “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine” (vv 35-37).
That’s the point. What had apparent been idle moments God was preparing David for the battles ahead? He would not only emerge out of the shadow as a great warrior but also a shepherd of his people ever relying on God.
Equally so, for all of us, there are moments that might appear idle and we feel frustrated as we see the days go by. Yet, in His gentle ways, God is preparing us for great days ahead.
Prayer today: Lord Father God, maker of heaven and earth, for those periods in life of apparent inactivity and maybe trials, help me appreciate them as the maturing me, for in due time and season all will bear fruit, this I pray in Jesus’ name!