Prayer takes time. In an age of instantaneous communication, and even quicker movement from here to there, prayer still takes time. Why?
Heaven. Too often disciples are in a rush: things to do, people to see, a living to make. But heaven.
שָׂמַחְתִּי, בְּאֹמְרִים לִי–בֵּית יְהוָה נֵלֵךְ
“I rejoiced in my soul when they said to me, ‘Let us travel to the house of the Lord.’”
David describes a journey. Journeys, by definition, take time. Even this inner journey of prayer takes time, at times, even more time than a journey of many miles.
With the miles of distraction, pressures, obligations, fears, heartache, etc. in our lives, prayer, really intimate prayer, is often a distance away.
The story is told of two men who met to pray and study. Both men began, silently, involved in their inner work. One finished long before the other. Why? What was his companion doing?
He explained, “You travel for business; why not just think of the journey, what you need to do at the destination, and imagine the return home in your mind?” “Because,” the man said, “I have to be there. I just can’t think myself there.”
Exactly. Prayer is being there. Not just talking to there, but a journey over the inner clutter along the way to be there, in His presence.
We should take time. Yes, it’s not always allowable, convenient, or desired; but we should learn to do the inner work of faith to appear before Him, and rejoice at the trip to be there; not just imagine it.
Why rush? We all know those precious times with family and friends, so sweet, that unfolded after the miles on the train, plane, or in an automobile.
How much sweeter the time before the Lord when we take our time, leave behind, even for a few moments, the urge to rush on to the next thing.
Yeshua/Jesus provides a beautiful example for us, as He lay aside sleep to go to the lonely places to pray, “Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” (Lk. 6:12).
He went out. It was inconvenient. It was physical movement. He demonstrated the inner journey of prayer for us by going out.
Shouldn’t prayer, speaking to the maker of heaven and earth, be the one thing we make time for, and not rush through?
Be well. Shalom.