Prayer is the place of refuge for every worry, a foundation for cheerfulness, a source of constant happiness, a protection against sadness.--St. John Chrysostom
(Gospel text: MK1,29-39)
On leaving the synagogue
Jesus entered the house of Simon and Andrew with James and John.
Simon’s mother-in-law lay sick with a fever.
They immediately told him about her.
He approached, grasped her hand, and helped her up.
Then the fever left her and she waited on them.
When it was evening, after sunset,
they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons.
The whole town was gathered at the door.
He cured many who were sick with various diseases,
and he drove out many demons,
not permitting them to speak because they knew him.
Rising very early before dawn,
he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed.
Simon and those who were with him pursued him
and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
He told them, “Let us go on to the nearby villages
that I may preach there also.
For this purpose have I come.”
So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons
throughout the whole of Galilee.
I am particularly struck by the line in today’s gospel passage which stated, “he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed". Jesus was obviously very busy and surrounded by people all the time but he too recognized the need for quiet, individual prayer and He modeled that for us.
We often say: —I have no time!
We are so busy with our homework, our professional activity, the countless tasks in our agenda... So, quite often, we believe we should be relieved from our daily prayers. We do a lot of important things, but often run the risk of forgetting the absolutely necessary one: prayer. We have to establish a balance to be able to do the former without neglecting the latter.
Saint Francis addressed this subject: «We must faithfully and devotedly work, without extinguishing the spirit of the holy prayer and devotion which the worldly things must be submitted to».
In the final analysis, maybe we should organize ourselves, as well as prioritize our time a little bit better.
Certainly, what is important must be done. But what is necessary should be an absolute must.