On days when it is especially cold outside, getting up is hard. It’s dark and dreary, and staying warm under the covers in bed would be so much more preferable! But the sad reality is we need to get up because there is a lot to do! We need to get ready for work. We need to get the children off to school. We need to get our stuff together to get ready for school…
Although it is getting lighter out now, waiting for the sun to rise when you are up at 5:30 takes patience! But as I sat in the darkness this morning, I am reminded that this was the time that Jesus often set aside to commune with His heavenly Father.
Mark 1:35 records, “Very 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.” In the Book of Leviticus, we find a lesson that could do more than almost anything I know to end spiritual burnout among Christians. We see the tabernacle set up to be a place of fellowship and communion between God and His people. It was there they practiced their various religious duties to God. It was also there that God revealed His will to them.
Leviticus 1 begins with the words, “The Lord called to Moses and spoke to him from the Tent of Meeting.” The word translated “called” means God spoke in a still, small voice. No lightning and thunder as on Mount Sinai. This was the gentle voice of God.
Many have set aside places of “refuge” in their homes specifically for prayer and personal worship. Some have even used the bathroom! I use my office time usually first thing after I arrive. It is easy to take my Bible, read and pray. Even if it is for only a few minutes each day, that time and space becomes my holy ground.
It is easy for us to make excuses NOT to spend time with God. We are all busy and have things to do. We have children to care for, spouses to make coffee for and work and school to go to, but can we take a few moments out the “insanity” of life, to spend with God?
Jesus example was both in word and deed… “when you pray… Our Father…” and “while it was still dark, Jesus… prayed.” He knew it was important to spend time with His Father. Shouldn’t we do likewise?
I was reading recently about a “cuddling” service that was coming to Edmonton. It was a service where you could pay someone to come spend time with you “cuddling.” Although I’m not too excited about that, it did speak to me of our need to take time for God and “cuddle with Him.”
We are all very busy. Our lives are filled with people and responsibilities pulling at us all the time. So as you read this, I want to encourage each of us to set aside a time and space for you and God, a place where you can claim as holy ground. Like a father whose child comes and snuggles up to him, God is pleased when we, who call Him Father, spend time “snuggling” with Him.
May God give us a greater desire for Himself, discipline and desire to take time to build that relationship with Him.