I am reading through a five-day devotional on the Prayers of Jesus.  Most of them are just short verses referencing the fact that He prayed.  Today, one of the verses stood out to me so clearly:

Luke 5:16 But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.

I had to go look up the chapter to see what the story was leading up to the verse.  Anytime a verse begins with “But…”, it’s tied to the verses and the story before it.  In this case, Jesus has become famous, people want to hang out with Him, He is healing people and doing amazing ministry, and everything is moving forward at 1000 mile an hour.

BUT he prayed.  In the busyness, success, and running; He prayed.

The third word hit me as well.  But Jesus OFTEN prayed.  He made it a habit.  I am so weak in this area, and I know it.  When I do stop and pray consistently, it changes me.  I can literally feel it.  But Jason doesn’t often pray.  I talk to God all day, but I don’t often stop and pray.  You see, the fourth and sixth words matter greatly here.  He WITHDREW to LONELY places.  He stopped the success, the ministry, the healing, the running, the being in demand, the great things and left it behind to pray.  Often.  Alone.

He quit doing the work of God to be with God.  This is the one I struggle with.  I am with God in the work.  I talk to Him WHILE I’m busy.  But I don’t often, on a regular basis, stop the work to just go away and pray.

So I am, right now.  As soon as I post this, I am leaving my desk to go off and pray.  I have a thousand things to do today, and ALL of them are urgent and important.  That’s why I am walking away.

What about you?