He went off to a lonely place and prayed there

The fame of Jesus has begun to spread. People have heard of his power to heal the sick and to cast out demons, so they all come to him for help. ‘The whole town came crowding round the door,’ Mark tells us. Jesus cures the sick without any fuss or drama. He never refuses to help those who ask him in faith.

Early the next morning, though, Jesus is nowhere to be found. He has gone to a lonely place to pray to God his Father. When the disciples find Jesus, they tell him, ‘Everybody is looking for you.’ Perhaps they feel that Jesus is wasting time. But he knows the importance of prayer. In the Gospels we often see Jesus praying, especially before he takes an important step in his ministry. His whole mission was driven by his love for his Father and he expressed his love by spending time in prayer, alone with God.

As disciples of Christ, we are called to love and serve our neighbours. Our service to others expresses our love of God, and so, like Jesus, we need to spend time in prayer each day, alone with the God who loves us.

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