Mark 1:35, 37-38 (NIV) 35Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed.
37and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” 38Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else-to the nearby villages-so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.”
Shortly after Jesus moved His ministry from Nazareth to Capernaum, He became swamped with requests for healing. The whole town waited outside the door of the home where He stayed (verse 33). To any rabbi of that day, this would have been the epitome of success. To connect with the masses in such a way as to have them begging for more would have been the pinnacle of achievement. Jesus’ did not measure His success by man’s standard. You can be sure He was kept up late with the demands the people placed upon Him for ministry, yet, early in the morning, before the dawn, He got up before anyone else to find time alone with His Father, to seek direction for the approaching day.
The disciples went searching for Him because everyone was clamoring for more. “Jesus! It’s revival! Hurry back and capitalize on the situation. What are you doing out here all alone?” Jesus response must have dumbfounded them. “Time to move on boys. We have other cities that need to hear. I didn’t come to be a star; I came to share the good news that kingdom of God is at hand.”
I wonder how much man has interfered with the work of God by staying when it was time to go, by being enamored with success when God desired fruit that remains. If we really want to be a success in the eyes of the One that made us and called us, we need to take the time alone with Him to get our direction. Let us take our eyes off the things that man focuses on and focus on the Father’s direction, His pleasure.
Consider: Fame is fickle. Fortune is fleeting, but pleasing the heart of God is fulfillment and joy that runs deeper than circumstance and time. Are you taking time to hear the Father’s direction?
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