"From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near." Matthew 24:32 (ESV)
‘When they found him, they said to him, “Everyone is searching for you.” Mark 1:37 (NRSV)
Jesus, needing to be alone with his Father had slipped away from the demands of ministry to be ministered to. Prime time to do this was very early in the morning while it was still dark. Jesus found a silent, deserted place and here he could spend time in solitude. Jesus had found a place that provided the stillness he needed to be nourished in his Father’s presence.
Ministry is demanding. There will always be another need – another phone call to make, another person to visit, another meeting to attend, another email to answer. Jesus’s work was endless, and so too is ours. Sometimes we might ask, “Where does it all end?” It ends when we stop and withdraw to be alone with our Father.
Our soul needs replenishing – often. Is it time to hang up a ‘Closed’ sign and retreat to a deserted place? We offer kindness and care to others, but often neglect to show the same to ourselves.
Jesus understood that intervals of rest were the only way to nurture the life that could be effective in ministering to others. We can only offer others what we have received from the Father. If we do not return again and again to soak in his presence, we will eventually have nothing to offer.
Let’s follow the rhythm of Jesus who ministered and then was ministered to. This is the rhythm that will sustain us. What are the obstacles to retreating with the Father? What needs to be put in place so they can be overcome?
Jennifer lives on the Darling Downs near Toowoomba, Queensland, with her family. She enjoys encouraging others on their Christian journey through writing and mentoring. Contact
- Devotion from FaithWriters Great Multitude Christian Daily Devotional web site
|East Tennessee District Newsletter|
The logo, seal, and name ‘Church of the Nazarene’ is a registered trademark and the use
is supervised by the General Board of the Church of the Nazarene.
This Web site is best displayed using the MS Edge or Internet Explorer 11 browsers. Google Chrome seems to work good too. Certain pages do not display correctly using Firefox. You may need to adjust the text size for your viewing pleasure using the View tab in the Menu bar. A quicker way to adjust text size is to do Ctrl + to enlarge the text or Ctrl - to make the text smaller.
Many of the linked pages on this Web site are in Portable Document Format (pdf). Opening them requires PDF Reader software. If you do not have PDF reading software already installed on your computer, click here to see several different free PDF readers that you can choose from to download one and install it on your computer.