“THE WORDS OF JESUS IN THE GOSPEL OF MARK
We are so glad you are joining us for these daily prayer devotionals as together we seek the heart of our God. Over the coming weeks, we will focus on some of the most meaningful words of our savior Jesus Christ from the book of Mark, as we follow his journey with his disciples on the path toward the cross. Our journey of prayer and fasting will culminate on Easter Sunday as we celebrate His resurrection, declaring victory over sin, death and shame.
Each devotion will take less than ten minutes of your time.
- We will Engage the Word – looking at some of Jesus’ words in their biblical context.
- We will Connect the Heart – considering a truth that is applicable to our lives.
- We will Reflect on the Truth, asking a number of questions each day that invite us to look and listen with intent.
- And we will Depend on the Spirit – We will pray, for it is in praying that we learn to pray. And it is in praying that the Spirit changes our hearts.
We want to encourage you to grab a journal or a notebook – something to write on as you walk through each prayer guide. Yes, it will add a few minutes to the time it takes to do the devotion, and it will also deepen your experience and shape your walk with God for years to come. This journal or notebook will be a keepsake to remind you of God’s faithfulness during this challenging season for all of us.
Engage the Word
30 The apostles returned to Jesus and told him all that they had done and taught.
31 And he said to them, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while.”
Connect the Heart
This is one of many places in the Bible we see acknowledgement from the deity of our need for rest and solitude. We see a number of times in the book of Mark where Jesus went away to “a desolate place.” Discipleship is hard work – and the disciples were very busy doing the work of the kingdom. Jesus here doesn’t command his disciples to work themselves until they drop. He knows they, like us, need time to breathe, to think, to pray.
Reflect on the Truth
- Why do you think the Bible commands us to rest?
2. As you head back into the work week on this Monday–after our God-given day of rest, Sundays–how might you let Jesus’ command impact your daily schedule this week?
3.Ask the Holy Spirit to help you see the deeper longings, desires or motives in your heart that these thoughts are pointing to. (for example: you may write down, “I’m too busy to take any down time – and I’d fall really far behind if I did. But deep down, it’s one of my deepest desires. I need your help, Lord.”) The Lord can help us discern the path forward – through His word, His Spirit, His people.
4. According to some sources, American workers don’t take all their earned vacation days off from work. Why might that be? What would be the long-term impact of always being “on” and not taking the rest God built us to need?
Depend on the Spirit
Pray for the Holy Spirit to help you prioritize rest and solitude as important contributors to your strength and faith. Pray for strength against the enemy as he tries to convince you rest is for the weak and that you really don’t need time to be with the Lord in prayer because you’re so busy. Pray through these thoughts from Psalm 23 and let them impact all your days this week: Lord, thank you! You are my shepherd and provide what I need; you command me to lie down in green pastures; you lead me beside still waters; you restore my soul; you lead me along the paths of righteousness; I can trust you, even in the face of hard challenges and evil; you are with me and comfort me; you protect me. Lord, thank you! Amen.