Scripture: Luke 4:42a
At daybreak he departed and went into a deserted place. (NRSV)

This text follows on the heals of yesterday’s text.  Jesus has just healed everyone who has been brought to him and now, at daybreak, he leaves the house and heads out to a deserted place.  If you recall, the healings started at “sundown.”  Now, it is “daybreak.”  It is probable that the healing session went all through the night and Jesus got no sleep.  I believe that Jesus now goes to a deserted place, not to sleep the day away, but to reconnect with the Father.  Jesus had given out all he had to those who needed healing and now he needed to take-in from the Father.

How crazy is your life?  Do you give all that you have to your family, friends, work obligations, schoolwork, volunteer positions?  If so, have you discovered the value of finding a “deserted” place where you can recharge?  It is so important for those who care for others or expend all their energies on others, to take time to receive power from God for themselves.  We cannot be the people God wants us to be if we do not have self-care as well.

I am just as guilty about this as many others.  I don’t always take a personal Sabbath rest during the week.  Last year, I took a Spiritual Renewal Leave because I had become so burned out that I was having trouble functioning.  It turns out that I really did not know just how badly I was burned out until I got away to a “deserted” place and began to have a time of restoration.  

What I am saying is, don’t wait until you get to the point of burn out and have lost the joy of life God wants you to have.  Follow Jesus’ example of taking time alone with God.  Follow God’s commandment to take a Sabbath day of rest.  Jesus’ example and God’s command are there for a reason.  God desires that you enjoy the life he has given you; self-care goes a long way in making that a reality for you.

Pray with me:

God of love and God of compassion lead me into your rest as I take the time you have commanded me to take in order to be refilled and refreshed by your Holy Spirit.  AMEN.

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