|Theme:||Jesus spent time in prayer and so should we. 5th Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B|
|Object:||An iPod, cell phone, or another object which must be recharged with use|
|Scripture:||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. Mark 1:35 (NIV)|
Do you have an iPod? I got an iPod for Christmas last year and I love it. It seems that you see people listening to their iPod everywhere you go. You see people jogging in the park sweating to the music, kids walking down the hall at school grooving to their favorite tunes, and others just sitting quietly relaxing to the music. As you probably know, an iPod runs on a built-in battery. Most iPods will play for about twenty-four hours before the battery has to be recharged. To do that, you have to plug your iPod into a charger. An iPod is really great way to listen to music, but it isn't much good if the battery isn't charged.
People need to recharge their batteries too. We work and play hard and if we don't get the proper rest, pretty soon we just don't have enough energy to do the things we need to do. It might come as a surprise to you that even Jesus had to recharge his batteries. In today's Bible lesson, we see a typical day in the life of Jesus.
Jesus traveled all around Galilee preaching, driving out demons, and healing people. After leaving the synagogue on the Sabbath day, Jesus and some of his disciples went to the home of Simon and Andrew. When they arrived, Simon's mother-in-law was in bed with a fever. They told Jesus about it, so he went to her, took her by the hand and helped her up. All at once, the fever left her and she began to prepare a meal for everyone.
I don't know how the town's people found out that Jesus was at the home of Simon and Andrew, but that evening many people were brought to Jesus to be healed of all sorts of diseases. The Bible says that the whole town gathered at the door to watch. No doubt Jesus was very tired after a long day of teaching and healing people. I'm sure that when he went to bed that night, he slept like a baby.
Jesus got up early the next morning before sunrise and went out to find a quiet place to pray. You see, Jesus knew that just as our bodies need to be recharged, so does our spirit. Jesus knew that it was important for him to spend time each day talking to his Father if he was going to have the spiritual strength to do what his Father had sent him to do. When Simon and the others woke up, they didn't know where Jesus was, so they went looking for him. When they found him they said, "Everyone is looking for you."
Jesus had recharged his batteries and was ready to go. He said to them, "Let's go to other towns and villages so that I can preach to them too. That's what I came to do." So they traveled throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and healing and casting out demons.
If Jesus thought it was important for him to recharge his spiritual batteries, don't you think it is important for us to do it too? Sure it is. That is why it is important for us to spend time in prayer every day and that is why it is important for us to come to Sunday School and church each week -- to get our batteries recharged.
Heavenly Father, help us to remember that just as our bodies must be renewed by proper rest, our spirit must be renewed by spending time with you in prayer, Bible study, and worship. Amen.
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