Sick of Religion? Week 6: Devotional Day 1
DAY 1 – Monday
Mark 3:7-8; Matthew 12:14-15; Mark 3:13-15; Matthew 6:6
Jesus is experiencing serious opposition by this point in the gospel. What is his response? Look for how he “withdrew with his disciples”, “went up on the mountain”, “called to him…and appointed 12”.
We pick up Jesus’ story just after he and his disciples have left the synagogue in Capernaum. Matthew 12:15 adds that Jesus withdraws to the sea because he is aware of the plot to take his life.
Again and again, Mark returns to the pattern of Jesus involved in confrontation and opposition, followed by a retreat to solitude. We see Jesus retreat in order to pray and recharge when he faces opposition from the Jewish authorities. We see him retreat for quiet prayer after healing people. We see him pray in solitude following intense interactions with demonic spirits. This is a wonderful example to us that we shouldn’t miss: the second person of the Trinity, the Son of God, makes it a point to find a quiet place where he can be completely alone with God before choosing the 12 apostles.
Spend some uninterrupted time today with God. Separate yourself from distractions (including your mobile device!) and give yourself completely to God. If this isn’t already part of your regular spiritual routine, I encourage you to try to do this at least once a week if possible. Schedule it on your calendar like an appointment. You may find these moments with God to be among the most meaningful and important parts of your day.