Laboring in prayer
By BILL KENT
Post-hole diggers, shovels and mops are some of the tools used for the kind of work making every muscle from your neck to your ankles ache. Then railroad workers nailing down spikes into crossties are soaked with sweat. A daycare worker changing diapers, wiping noses and feeding bottles proves her worth daily. Then working in a restaurant as a server or cook requires speed, a good memory and tremendous endurance because some folks enjoy taking out their frustrations on service professionals.
When Jesus started his ministry at age 30, he was no stranger to work. His father trained him and his brothers to carry on the carpentry business. Jesus didn’t have electricity. A power saw or drill weren’t available. He used a hammer with a stone head strapped with leather to a wood handle and a metal chisel to make tables, stools, cartwheels, benches, window frames, doors, plows, and yokes. Many carpenters also did masonry work. So the Savior had strong hands, muscular forearms and broad shoulders from years of manual labor.
Jesus prepared well for the long days of preaching, healing, answering hostile critics, listening to genuine seekers and praying. If you study his life, he spent much time in prayer. He prayed all night before choosing the 12 Disciples. His most intense labor was prayer for people. He often prayed before the disciples got out of bed. “Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there prayed,” (Mark 1:35).
When Jesus faced temptation, he defeated the Devil every time by quoting Scripture and staying near the Heavenly Father through the grueling exercise of heartfelt prayer. Therefore, he was fully prepared when Judas came to betray him. He prayed while his disciples slept. They panicked and he calmly handled the most difficult night of his life. What about us? Are we making prayer our daily delight? Speaking with the Lord of the universe is a great privilege. Let’s cherish the moment. Bill Kent, Pastor of Pitts Baptist Church contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org