“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5.16 NIV).
Jesus is the most public figure that ever walked the earth, but even His days on earth were numbered. His short thirty-three years changed time and history, allowing heaven to infiltrate earth because of His Finished Work on the Cross. He could have been swept up in the public eye constantly, but He realized how important it was to spend time alone with God, especially knowing He would be asked to pay the ultimate price for the sins of the world.
People both loved and hated Jesus. Many loved Him for what they could get from Him. Others hated Him because He flipped their notions of righteousness. The last would be first and only the faith of a child could receive the Kingdom. (Matthew 20:16 & Matthew 19:14) As Jesus’ ministry drew closer to the Cross, He lost almost all of His followers—besides the twelve whose faithfulness would be tested until the bitter end. The adoration of His public ministry quickly diminished and He asked His twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?” (John 6:67 ESV). His time spent alone with the Father would be the anchor, holding Him steady to God’s will.
Jesus’ public ministry quickly turned against Him, and those that once loved Him would cry out for His crucifixion. All that He had left was His relationship with His Father, and that would give Him the strength to stay obedient unto death. His numbered days ended with His life given for those whom He loved.
Just like Jesus, our days are also numbered, and our public ministry could be stripped away. God could remove our platform in an instant, and all that will remain is the private ministry we have formed with Him. How intimate will our relationship with God be when the eyes of the crowd are no longer on us and the external motivations are gone? The intentions of our prayers are exposed when all we have left is our time with God. And like Jesus, that intimacy with the Father will give us the strength to stay obedient to taking up our cross and dying to self (Luke 9:23).
Our time on the platform before the masses should urge us to spend more time on our knees before the Father. Click To Tweet Jesus was God in the flesh, and even the Perfect Son of God needed time alone spent with God. His ministry was limited to only a few years, and so often His disciples watched Him slip away from the crowds to connect with His Father. The portion of time spent with God was well worth the investment. We too can slip away each day to commune with God, and our time in prayer will shape our lives around His goodness and Kingdom plan.
We cannot fulfill the great plans that God has for us without forging a deepening intimacy with God. Click To Tweet The indwelling of God’s Spirit is a gift bought with a price through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit resides in us, waiting to refresh us, sustain us and empower us to achieve His will. The Bible says that our days are fleeting on this earth, and we have just a brief moment to touch eternity with our lives (Psalm 144:4). As we number our days, we can set aside valuable time each day with God in prayer.
“Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90.12 NIV).