Everyone is looking for you! That’s what the disciples told Jesus, in today’s reading from Mark. Jesus hardly gets a moment to himself. In this short section of text: he preached in the synagogue, healed Peter’s mother-in-law of a fever, and healed the sick and demon-possessed who gathered at the door. Finally, in the dark before dawn, Jesus was able to go, by himself, to pray.
Prayer can happen over a meal, in the middle of your work, as you drift off to sleep. Whenever or however you pray, the act of praying makes an intentional connection between you and God. Prayer takes many forms but essentially it is a conversation with God. Conversation means talking–it also means listening. Prayer is a way to enter into God’s time, and a way to restore your soul. Even Jesus, it seems, needed to be restored and re-centered at a busy time in his ministry.
People were looking for him while he was off by himself praying. You can hear the edge in [Simon] Peter’s voice: “Everybody is searching for you!” (Where have you been? You should have been here with us!) It sounds like Jesus really heard something during his time of prayer, because he did not go back to Simon Peter’s house to continue to heal the sick and demon-possessed. Instead he called his disciples to continue traveling through Galilee, proclaiming his message, “for that is what I came out to do.” Jesus was listening to what God wanted him to do, and he could hear God when he was praying more easily then when he was surrounded by people.
Questions to think about:
- Why do you think everyone was looking for Jesus?
- Where and when do you pray?
- How do you feel after you pray?
- When you pray, are you usually talking or listening?
Blessings, Mother Anne+