Mar. 12, 2014
On Wednesday evenings, I teach a Confirmation class for teenagers. Tonight’s subject was being a disciple of Jesus. What do it mean and the choices we make in how we live our lives For God?
One way is by devotion. To help us understand what devotion looks like, we looked at Jesus’ example. That’s when we ran across this verse from Mark’s Gospel, which tells us that while it was still dark, Jesus got up and prayed.
We talked about when we’ve gotten up when it has still been dark and the circumstances surrounding this. The kids talked about getting up early when they go hunting, fishing and for sporting events. But to pray? Not so much. One boy thought he deserved credit for getting up early when he stays overnight at a friend’s house and still making it to church.
How about you? What causes you to get up when it is still dark? When you roll out of bed in the morning, do you hit the day running or do you spend a few quiet minutes with God?
The last few years, I have discovered that praying in bed before my feet hit the ground helps me focus and reflect on where I want to get energy from the day. Maybe it’s only praying for two or three minutes in my head, but it’s a choice to dedicate the day to God first. It’s remembering whose I am before I have a chance to screw something up.
I’m not sure the teens were convinced of the need to get up before dawn and pray. Most importantly, they heard about Jesus’ devotion to God and his desire for us to strive for this also. Whether it’s when it is dark or when it is light, at the end of the day, Jesus simply yearns for devotion. Doesn’t the King deserve this?
Almighty God, being devoted to you should be relatively easy. But sometimes, we just do not make those choices. Thank you for the model that Jesus gives us. Help us to see that choosing to follow you is worth the extra effort. Amen.
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