Pastor’s Pen: In charge

Luke 6:12, “… He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.”

Luke 9:18, “… He was alone praying…”

Mark 1:35, “… having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed.”

The gospels make it clear that Jesus Christ spent much time in prayer. But why would our Lord take time away from ministry and sleep to pray? Last weekend gave me a little insight.

Last weekend I was in charge of organizing a basketball tournament. It takes a lot of work to put together. The day before the tournament a few of us worked until 8:30 p.m. putting up banners and hauling things to the school. I then went to bed with a huge headache. After a restless night, I awoke at 2 a.m. and packed some things up at the church. I was there until 4:30 a.m., after which, I went home for an hour of sleep before heading to the school. The day started bumpy, but went great and ended around 4 p.m. Clean-up followed until about 8:30 that night.

It was a long weekend and I didn’t get a lot of sleep. Why? Because I was in charge. I was the one responsible if something went wrong or things weren’t cleaned up. I would have to answer for any mistakes that happened that day so I stayed up to work out the details ahead of time.

I had the weight of a simple event on my shoulders. Christ had the weight of paying for the sins of the world on His. No wonder He would be up all night praying and early the next morning. Salvation lay in the balance and He was ultimately responsible for bringing it about. He knew what He needed to do – pray to the Father.

You have a responsibility as well. First, to decide what you will do with Christ. Secondly, to live your life for Him. It’s a huge task to follow God every minute of every hour of every day. And YOU are the one responsible for accomplishing this task. You are the one who will stand before God. You cannot blame anyone else for how you disobeyed and dishonored Him. The buck stops at you. That is why you and I must go to God in prayer – constantly, without stopping. We cannot do this alone, but need the help of our Father in heaven. As you go through your day, take plenty of time to pray. You’re responsible, but you’re not alone.