Shepherd’s Heart – Saturday, August 11, 2018
From the Shepherd’s Heart
“And rising early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.” Mark 1:35
How do you begin the day? Are your first conscious moments a focus on shutting off the alarm and pulling up the covers to avoid the agenda of the day? Maybe you are so rushed, you finish dressing and eating breakfast as you drive to the first appointment of the day.
Who sets the agenda of those first waking moments each day? Are you responsible for your world, or, is your world responsible for what you think, how you act, or what you say? Jesus set an example on how to control your day. Notice how Jesus remained in control of every day He lived.
First, Jesus focused on fellowship with His Father in Heaven. Jesus focused on His purpose instead of His circumstances. While His disciples focused on the demands of the crowds, Jesus focused on the source of power, and wisdom needed to meet each day. The time to communicate with the Heavenly Father prepared Jesus to meet the demands that come.
Second, Jesus made that fellowship with the Heavenly Father, priority. Jesus’ consistency in prayer provided consistency in doing and saying the right things when He met life. The greater the demand, the quicker He resorted to prayer. The more popular He became with successful ministry, the more He felt the need to stay aligned with the Father’s will. The closer Jesus came to life-threatening events, the longer He communed with the Father above. Instead of allowing life to crowd out prayer, Jesus allowed prayer to prioritize life.
Third, Jesus used prayer as a time of renewal and preparation. For Jesus, this was a time to recharge His batteries. The greater the drain on life, the greater the power needed to come. That power would not be found in the opinions of man. It will only be found in the authoritative advice of God. The same will be true for us. Opinions are cheap. Wisdom is priceless, and it only comes from above.
If you want to be more like Jesus, add time to the beginning of your day to have fellowship with Him. It is much more rewarding to commit your day to the Lord at its beginning, than to apologize for your mismanagement of the day at its end. Try beginning your day with the priority of prayer and see if life becomes easier to face.
Source: Dr. John A. Temple (2018)
Reprinted with permission.
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