Mat 14:23 “After Jesus had dismissed them, He went up on a mountainside by Himself to pray.”
Are you a Christian that knows the importance of prayer? Have you ever had one of those seasons when your prayer life felt a little dry? When dead and dry becomes someone’s experience in prayer, when discouragement works to keep you from praying, or when other things begin to compete for the time that is spent in prayer, prayer often loses out. When there doesn’t seem to be an immediate loss or negative effect from prayerlessness, prayerlessness can become a habitual pattern.
Jesus knew better than to let that happen. Let’s take a His example to us and be refreshed of exactly why we can’t let our prayer life be stolen from us. I want to show you a day in the life of Jesus.
In these verses, you will see that He lost a friend who was also His cousin. He was also swarmed by intense crowds who wanted to hear from and be healed by Him. They didn’t care how He was feeling about His personal loss. He had to seek the Father in order to take care of the diversity of needs these people had. He put Himself in the role of Jesus as a man stripped of His divinity and living by faith as He taught us to. He eliminated His divine advantages. He lived by faith which is fed through the Word of God and prayer – just like we are to!
The people wanted to follow Him everywhere. He knew that His source of strength, miraculous power, refreshing, and instruction from God came in prayer. So, He didn’t start the day in prayerlessness nor finish this horrendous day crashing on the couch. Instead He yielded in prayer to His Father. It was a good thing He did because after an exhausting day, He had a spiritual emergency call that night. Because He was spending time with the Father, the Holy Spirit prompted Him to go save His disciples from an attack of Satan. Had He not taken the time to pray, He may have been too spiritually weary and not done it. The next day he started this kind of routine all over again. Is a prayer life an option for us? Can we afford to let is slide? As you will see, people were dependent upon Jesus. He had to pray. Read all this for yourself.
Mat 14:9-33 King Herod was distressed… he ordered that her request be granted and had John beheaded in the prison. His head was brought in on a platter… John’s disciples came and took his body and buried it. Then they went and told Jesus. When Jesus heard what had happened, He withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick. As evening approached, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away, so they can go to the villages and buy themselves some food.” Jesus replied, “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat.” “We have here only five loaves of bread and two fish,” they answered. “Bring them here to me,” he said. And he directed the people to sit down on the grass. Taking the five loaves and the two fish and looking up to heaven, he gave thanks and broke the loaves. Then he gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the people. They all ate and were satisfied, and the disciples picked up twelve basketfuls of broken pieces that were left over. The number of those who ate was about five thousand men, besides women and children. Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of Him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. After he had dismissed them, He went up on a mountainside by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone, but the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it. During the fourth watch of the night Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. When the disciples saw Him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear. But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.” “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
Because Jesus prayed, God could work through Him. Even though His heart hurt over the personal loss of His beheaded cousin John, even though He was weary and exhausted, even though He had to have wanted to just crash, rest, and zone out, He prayed. When we pray, like Jesus, we can be used to speak His words of life, touch people’s lives with His healing touch, and be used to bring help, doing what in ourselves would seem impossible. Jesus gave His life to be an example for us. Prayer infuses refreshing, faith, direction, instruction, strength, and great purpose. It’s not a place to drift from. It’s something to yearn for and yield to. The lives of many depend upon it! Don’t let any kind of discouragement render you ineffective. Pray! Let God refresh and empower you and like Jesus, through prayer and the leading of His Holy Spirit, be used to destroy the evil the Satan tries to destroy lives with.
In His love,
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2009 Tim Burt, All rights reserved.