We are created to be in relationship. Just as the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit relate with each other, so we are created to relate with them and each other. Now, during this pandemic, more perhaps than ever before, we are noticing this may be because we are feeling the lack of our usual social connections. I am not a hugely party-going person, but I do like to greet the person on the till at the supermarket.
I miss a coffee with a friend, and of course I miss welcoming people to an Ellel Centre or fellowshipping with people in church. What I have found amazing is just how much social media is available to help people stay in touch. If I am honest, it is almost a wee bit overwhelming, as there seem to be so many platforms I struggle to keep up – although that could just be my age and lack of tech skills!
I do not know how it is for you, but many of the folk I have talked to have mentioned that, despite having more time available, there are different pressures in the midst of it all, almost crowding out their time with the Lord.
Jesus understood this very well. He invited His disciples to “come away with Me” and I believe He wants to extend that invitation to us today. His disciples had just returned from their first ministry trip, excited, exhilarated, exhausted, full of stories of what they had seen, healings, deliverances, lives changed and maybe even wanting to talk about some sadness where they were perhaps rejected. They needed time to talk to their friend and Teacher. What an example we have, that Jesus is wanting to spend time with us and hear about our day, our highs and lows, joys and struggles and talk with us, relate with us and give us rest.
Jesus also needed time with His Father. He had just lost his beloved cousin, John the Baptist, the one who had baptised Him and prepared the way for Him. He lost him to horrible circumstances and would not have been able to mourn for him in the usual way. Jesus, the man, was not immune to grief and loss and understands our immense hurt and pain in these pressured times.
Of course, the crowd follow and that precious alone time with Jesus was ‘pushed aside’ for a miracle, the feeding of the 5000. What I love to see is that after all that, Jesus once again went to spend time with His Father in prayer.
I suppose my question for all of us is this, when Jesus asks us to “come away with Him”, do we go? Do we want to spend time in to company of our friend and teacher? And what if our time with Jesus gets pushed aside for – well, whatever crops up – would we dare to ask to see miracles? How about inspiration for the home schooling? How about contact from a friend to know we are not forgotten? Or an overlooked biscuit in the corner of the tin at just the right moment?
Don’t forget, just as Jesus did when He went to spend some time with His Father, we can always find a little more time to spend with Him.
Prayer: Father God, thank You for Your Son Jesus and thank You that Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to draw me to relationship with Him. Thank You, Jesus, for Your invitation that I can come away with You, that You are interested in me and my life, and that You understand the delights and the sadnesses. Thank You that You understand how distractions will come. Help me to come back to You and rest with You. Oh yes, and please help me keep my eyes and heart open to the miracles around me. Thank You, Lord. Amen.
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