March 22, 2016
But the news about Him was spreading even farther, and large crowds were gathering to hear Him and to be healed of their sicknesses. But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness (""deserted place"") and pray. (Luke 5:15-16)
Everything about the lifestyle of Jesus should be studied and sacred to us. For He not only came to show us the Father, but also to show us what a man, rightly related to the Father, must be and do.
THE UNUSUAL PRACTICE
Jesus was drawing crowds, which is explainable. But what is not explainable is His practice to ""often slip away to the deserted place and pray."" Most leaders of such fame would milk the crowd moments. A famous leader would tell us of his busyness and admit he had very little time to get away. But not Jesus.
There were moments when he simply slipped through the watching crowd and retired. This was so common for him that we can rightly say it was the deliberate habit of his life.
Why would Christ not squeeze the moments of his fame? Even his own brothers questioned him about this. But Jesus was not enamored by the crowds. He went to them because He loved people and He wanted to “seek and save” that which was lost.
But, His one desire was to do the will of the Father. And He knew that He could not do God's will if He did not know God's will. He knew He would have no Divine power without Divine connection and no Divine direction without Divine communion.
And, you have to believe, if you know Him well, that these moments and hours in God's presence were the most cherished of His earthly life. That He went to the wilderness because he loved His Father and longed for communion with Him. Quietness in the Father’s presence was the goal, to simply be with the One He loved.
Every reason He had for seclusion should be our reasons. The man who is always available and seeking the limelight is not the One we should follow. Follow the man (and be the man) who often slips away to pray. For this man will have something from God to tell you when the crowds appear.
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A changed life.
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