Today's Devotional Thought
October 10, 2011 by Rachel Piferi
I have to admit, I am dragging today. Wendy & I took a group of ladies (almost 40 in all) to the Extraordinary Women Conference in Lynchburg, Virginia this past weekend. It was a wonderful weekend of fellowship, worship, and time away to reflect on the Lord. I enjoyed the weekend immensely and as I always do, I felt God so powerfully while we were at the conference.
At one point during the conference, I sat back and noticed our large group of ladies (taking up four rows of seats) just immersed in worship. I watched as they were worshipping and focused entirely on one thing: the Lord. And, my heart was so full. I know for many in our group, time away like this is rare. To be able to leave behind the responsibilities of family, work, and life and just spend time with God was something that some of them had not done in a long time. And as I saw hands raised, eyes closed, and tears flowing, I was overcome with how awesome it is to be able to have big moments like this with the Lord in the midst of our busy, problem-filled, and sometimes discouraging lives.
It was an extremely powerful weekend for me for many reasons. And today, I plan to pull back and have a day like Jesus would have when he would retreat to pray. Numerous times throughout the Gospels, you see Jesus retreating to a private place to pray. These moments for Jesus usually came after a big miracle or gathering where he was teaching and healing and ministering. And, while we don't have record of what he prayed in many of these moments, I can imagine him going off by himself to be with his Father so he could reflect, recharge, and refocus. I can imagine that his human mind, heart, and body needed to get away from the noise, the cheers, and the criticism at times to focus on his purpose. I can imagine him feeling overcome with the enormity of the responsibility upon him and I can almost feel how full his heart must have felt as he watched the men and women around him focused on him and his messages. I can see him spending this time with his father in precious conversation with him about his own mission, for strength for his physical body, and just in dialogue about the amazing and powerful experiences he was having. And, I also imagine that he spent that time praying for what was to come for his precious followers and for those he would come into contact with.
Today, I plan to spend time reflecting, recharging, and refocusing after a very powerful weekend. And, I urge you to take time to do the same. So often, we find ourselves in busy periods of ministry, family, or life and we can become very overwhelmed (both negatively and positively). And, it is at those times, that we need to follow Jesus' lead and retreat to a private place and spend time alone in precious conversation with God.