Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. Simon and his companions went to look for him, and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” So he traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons. Mark 1, verses 35-39
Wake. Pray. Minister. Sleep. Repeat.
If you aren’t a Christian, you might not know what “the Great Commission” is. It’s in the last chapter of Matthew, where Jesus commissions his disciples to go out all across the planet and make disciples of everyone else. Here in Mark, several years before He said that, is a foreshadowing of that charge.
Why did Jesus come here? To go somewhere else – to the next place – to minister there. He was preaching His own words, and many of those who heard those words realized they were the bread of life; read in the book of John for an explanation of that. Jesus’ ministry here was to go where He needed to go to preach to people who needed to meet Him.
He did that by waking up, praying, ministering, sleeping, and then repeating the cycle again the next day. We don’t know much about what Jesus of Nazareth did during the first 30 years of His life, but we know very well what Jesus the Son of God did for His three years in public ministry. He did those five steps all over the area we call Israel today. I’m thinking Jesus probably spent more than 5 minutes with God every day, but the bottom line is that he well-spent good time. Ditto, then, for the other activities during each day on the road. Wake, pray, preach, sleep, repeat: that was His routine.
I mean, in your job, don’t you wake up, do your day, then return home for rest? I do; so do most people I know. Most folks who work usually follow a fairly fixed routine. Your job probably isn’t to journey all over your state proclaiming the Gospel; that would be a cool job, though. But your “Galilee” is probably a lot like mine. It’s where I live, in the area where I work. And in the area where I work and live I’ve been tasked to use my talents to God’s glory to introduce others to Him. I do it in my own way: through words, (badly) through social media, through one-on-one time with friends and strangers, and in a bunch of other ways that I don’t even recognize. Every day, my job is to do whatever I can to make the most out of the talents with which God has entrusted me to hook up other people to Jesus. In the course of managing projects, or buying groceries, or changing a tire, or drinking a beer with friends, or whatever you might find me doing when I’m awake there is no more important task. And then to do it somewhere else the next day.
Other than the obvious God-vs-man difference, what’s so different between my life and Jesus’? Our mission is the same no matter where the mission field is. Wake. Pray. Minister. Sleep. Repeat: and all with a thankful smile. That is our commission.
Lord, strengthen me for my mission for You today.
Read Mark 5, verses 1-20, and read Luke 4, verses 14-22. Jesus got around.