Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

Prayer Vigils

Luke 6:12-38 Over the years I have experienced many prayer vigils. One particularly comes to mind. Our little neighborhood women's prayer group decided to spend all night in prayer at my home. We tried to pray from 8 at night to 8 in the morning. We failed miserably. We kept falling asleep, and often we talked more than we prayed simply because we knew if we closed our eyes we would be off to sleep again. Jesus, however, did not have any problem spending a whole night in prayer. This scripture says Jesus continued all night in prayer.

Recently I heard someone say that they make appointments with God. They set aside a whole day to spend in prayer with Him, and if anyone calls them, they just say, "Today is my day apart with the Lord; I'll call you back tomorrow." I think I could do this. I am an early morning person, and I could pray for eight hours during the day. If I started at 6 a.m. and stayed in that special prayer place until 4 when I had to fix dinner, this would be eight hours.

God, however, is not interested in our keeping a timetable for prayer. He just wants us to pray without ceasing and to ever commune with Him. There are times, however, when we need to set aside special seasons of prayer. My husband, for example, went to Stone Mountain for the day and prayed all afternoon. It was during this time of prayer that he understood his call to be a Joseph in these end days. In fact, he heard with his spiritual ears God call him Joseph. His father's middle name was Joseph. Joseph means "provider," and all the Josephs in the Bible were providers. First there was Joseph who went into Egypt ahead of his brothers to prepare for a time of famine. Then Jesus' earthly daddy or guardian was named Joseph. This Joseph provided a safe, loving environment for Jesus in His childhood. And then there was Joseph of Arimathea, who provided the tomb for Jesus. Blessed insights like this come to us when we are willing to set time apart to be with the Lord.

It has been a long time since I took a day apart, and I am challenged this morning to make an appointment with God in the near future to just spend a day with Him. Maybe you are a night person, and you could spend a whole night in prayer. Whatever works for you. Just do it.

Father, forgive me for not making appointments with You. I make appointments with my husband all the time to have little getaways together. Help me to remember that You long for a little getaway with me. Show me the time that would be best for You and me. Thanks.

READ: Deuteronomy 2:1-3:29; Luke 6:12-38; Psalm 67:1-7; Proverbs 11:27

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