In His Presence

Immediately He made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, to Bethsaida, while He sent the multitude away. 46And when He had sent them away, He departed to the mountain to pray.

Mark 6:45-46 NKJV

Many believers often succumb to worry, fear, and anxiety as they take stock of the staggering issues facing the world today. Psalm 55:22 NKJV states, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain thee: He shall never permit the righteous to be moved.” According to this verse, the way to remain in peace is to spend concentrated time in the presence of the Lord.

Setting time aside to get quiet and seek God to hear His voice can be a challenge for busy people. With all the tasks related to work, school, family, and recreation, spending time with God is often put on the back burner. In today’s passage of scripture, we see that even Jesus Himself withdrew from the hustle and bustle of His daily schedule for consecrated times of prayer.

Jesus had just fed 5,000 people and had one of the largest meetings of His ministry, which had built a growing excitement among His followers. Everyone was talking about the miracle of producing supernatural food. You have been there. Maybe you just pulled off a major conference, garnered a multi-million dollar contract, aced your finals, reached 60,000 followers on Instagram, or some other exclusive accomplishment. We might be tempted to revel in our moments of success but look at what Jesus did! He told the disciples to get on a ship and sail away. Then He sent away the crowds and headed for solitude, going to the mountains to pray. Jesus needed to get to a place where He could have uninterrupted time to pray to the Father.

After great moments of success, we can often be tempted to keep going, striving for the next thing on our list or checking to see if we have one more like or new follower. But on the flip side of success is defeat or misfortune. Even now, some people are not dealing with success but are struggling to get by or cope with life’s unpleasant circumstances. The only way we can get through such times victoriously is to spend quality time with the Father in prayer.

If you read further down in Mark, chapter four, you will see in verses 47-51 that Jesus walked on water and commanded the storm to be still! We must take the time to deliberately be available for consecrated prayer. Some may say, “I talk to God all day long when I’m driving to work or completing tasks.” Is it not time that we gave God more of our undivided attention? If we want to be victorious like Jesus, we must do what Jesus did in this example: Get to our mountains and pray!


Reflect
When you think about spending extra time with God, are there other things screaming for your attention? Know that your flesh will put up a fight when you get to your quiet place for prayer. Be determined to stay there because in His presence is peace and joy. This is where your strength and answers come from.

Prayer
Father, although I have much to do today, I cannot miss spending time with You. I repent for the days I have sought to serve You in my own strength. I was busy but not always fruitful because I failed to maintain my vital connection with You. I diligently seek You for wisdom and revelation. Holy Spirit, teach me to prioritize my days with the Lord having first place. Please refill me today with Your power and Your joy, which is my impenetrable strength! In Jesus’ name, I pray.

Upcoming Connect 21 Events

  1. Saturday Morning Prayer (Jan 22th @ 9 am at The Way UMC – Latimer Hall) More Details
  2. Sunday Morning Service (Jan 23rd @ 10 am at River Ridge High School)