Developing A Sense of God’s Timing
Today’s reading: Genesis 46-48; Matthew 14:22-36
And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, Matthew 14:23
Jesus, after hearing about the death of John the Baptist, sought to be alone (Matthew 14:13), but crowds came seeking Him. He patiently and lovingly ministered to them including feeding 5000 with a couple of fish and some bread. That work completed, He dismissed the crowd and sent the disciples off in a boat while He went alone to a desolate place.
Here are a few observations about these incidents:
Jesus took time to be alone. Too often, people in Christian ministry become exhausted because they see their work as too important to take time for rest and prayer. Jesus recognized His need for time alone.
Jesus accepted interruptions to His personal life. When the crowds came, He served them postponing His time alone. Too often, people in Christian ministry put their own needs above those of others and show no flexibility or sensitivity to others. Jesus delayed His time alone.
Jesus returned to His disciples at their time of need. Once His time alone was concluded, Jesus went right back to the twelve who were in the midst of a severe storm on the sea. Too often, people in Christian ministry who take time to rest begin to enjoy it so much they never return to the work. Jesus did not shirk His responsibilities by overextending His time alone.
Jesus had a sense of timing in His life and ministry. He balanced private prayer and public ministry perfectly. He did His Father’s will peacefully and confidently.
In our Genesis reading today, Jacob also shows sensitivity to God’s timing in his life. He anticipates his coming death and takes care of final matters. Too many people act like they will live forever and do not take care of matters that will make it easier on their surviving family and friends when they pass away.
Are you developing a sense of God’s timing in your life? Do you balance personal prayer and public ministry so that both get needed attention? Are you taking care of matters that need to be done by you before God calls you home?