35 It was very early in the morning and still dark. Jesus got up and left the house. He went to a place where he could be alone. There he prayed. 36 Simon and his friends went to look for Jesus. 37 When they found him, they called out, “Everyone is looking for you!” 38 Jesus replied, “Let’s go somewhere else. I want to go to the nearby towns. I must preach there also. That is why I have come.” 39 So he traveled all around Galilee. He preached in their synagogues. He also drove out demons.
This is an interesting interaction between Jesus and His disciples, and I think this scenario reveals some of Jesus’ priorities in time management and people management. It sounds to me like there’s a subtle rebuke in the disciples’ remark to Jesus – “Everyone is looking for you!”. As in, “Jesus, we are annoyed with you that you have taken off to pray by yourself (and didn’t tell us what you were doing) – don’t you know people are looking for you?!”
And Jesus’ reply sounds to me something like this – “I actually don’t operate on everybody’s expectations so I’m not really bothered that everyone is looking for me. I am doing something important here – spending time alone praying. Now then, even though people are looking for me, I’ve got something else more important to do, so let’s go and do that!” Wow!
So what can I learn from this?
- Jesus made a priority out of spending time alone with His father… So should I.
- Jesus didn’t do things just because others expected Him to… Sometimes it’s OK to say ‘no’ to people’s expectations.
- Jesus often didn’t tell His disciples all of His plans, so they just had to follow Him in faith that He knew what He was doing … I will not be able know the full details of God’s plans, but I can trust that He knows what He is doing.
- Jesus knew what He was called to do and stayed focused on that in spite of pressure to meet other’s agendas… In the demands of life, I need to constantly re-evaluate if what I am doing is actually what I’m really meant to be doing.
So many lessons here in one short narrative…
Jesus, help me to be like You in setting and following priorities that will keep me in connection with You and Your purposes for my life.
Written by Shelley Witt