Time Out

Time Out

Throughout the gospel accounts we see Jesus taking time to pray. Christ prayed on different occasions, in different ways, and for many different things. One of the reasons these prayers are recorded in the Holy Scriptures is because Christ was setting an example for us            (1 Peter 2:21).

One key element of prayer is to do it often (1 Thessalonians 5:17). It is important to be in constant communion with God: (speaking to God, listening to God, watching for God to move, and in desperate or wonderful times crying out to Him spontaneously in brokenness or thanksgiving).

However, the specific focus of this devotion is making time for planned, daily, serious discussions with God. One great example of Christ making time for this type of prayer is just before He formally called the 12 disciples (apostles).
  • Luke 6:12-13 And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. 13 And when it was day, he called unto him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles;

Some people refer to this type of prayer as ‘closet’ prayer. This comes from Matthew chapter 6 where Christ is teaching about prayer and says (closet meaning inner room):
  • Matthew 6:6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

As we learn from Christ’s life and words, it is not so much about the place as it is your state of mind. For serious focused prayer time with God you need to be free of distractions. It is also best to have a set time each day that you have dedicated for this purpose. For some of us that means getting up extra early in the morning. For others it may be during your lunch break or late at night. The key is finding the right time for you and God to be alone.

Take a Time Out with God every day (including vacations, holidays, etc.). Don’t be legalistic about this (prayer is not an obligation, it is a tremendous privilege). But do be disciplined: you will never look back on your life and wish you had prayed less. Pray whether you ‘feel’ like it or not. And by the way, while you are at it, be sure to allow time for daily Bible reading. How do you know how to pray and what to pray about if you are not saturated in God’s Word?

No doubt, this requires a sacrifice. A daily sacrifice that honors God and Christ’s call to be His disciple.
  • Luke 9:23-24 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. 24 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it.
 
Prayer

Father in Heaven, through the shed blood of my Savior Jesus Christ and by my salvation, You have offered me the tremendous privilege of prayer. I confess that I don’t pray as much as I should. I admit that sometimes during my prayers I am distracted. But despite the weaknesses of my flesh, I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to commune with You. I thank You for the indwelling presence of Your Holy Spirit that guides me in prayer. Please continue to give me the desire to be in daily prayer to You my Lord. I love You. Thank You for loving me first.  Thank You for answering prayer.  In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.