April 3

April 3
by Joe Hill
But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” -Luke 5:16
The Gospels are filled with verses like this. You will find, if you read any of the accounts of Jesus’ life, that he often withdrew to quiet places to pray by himself. This has been a regular part of my own spiritual practices for quite some time, but this last year has offered plenty of opportunities to adapt that practice to new situations. The birth of my daughter meant that my own residence had significantly less quiet space and quiet time for this to happen. And now as my family and I shelter in place during this season, I am finding that once again am reshaping this practice for my own life: with all of us at home all the time, it is more difficult than normal to find a quiet place to pray, both physically and mentally.

Do you have this practice in your own life? What does that normally look like? And how has it been impacted by your current reality? When the demands on Jesus’ time were high, when he was tired, and the crowds kept coming… these were the very times when Jesus found it most necessary to make time to spend with God. Perhaps your house is more crowded more often than usual. Perhaps the demands on your time have changed: the phone keeps ringing and the emails keep coming… Or maybe it’s the other way: you are finding yourself less busy, more lonely, more bored.
Regardless of the shape of your life in this season, we all have something to learn from Jesus’ habit of making time for prayer. How can you practice making space in your life for time in prayer? For some, 10 minutes might be as much as you can find. For others, this may be a time where you can spend extended periods of time in prayer often. Whatever your situation is these days, I want to encourage you to learn from Jesus to make time to spend with God in prayer.

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