Mark 1:35
In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there.

From the time I was a child I have enjoyed hunting wild game. There’s just something about getting up early and heading into the woods quietly among the sounds of nature, listening and watching. There are different stages of maturity that a hunter goes through. First a new hunter just wants to have success (bag some game). Then a hunter wants to be the best at hunting (bag the most game). Then, when those stages have passed, a hunter wants to trophy hunt for the big one. Finally, the hunter just enjoys going hunting. I believe that I am somewhere between the last two. In the years since trusting in God, I have found myself enjoying just being out there in the solitude of nature, just me and the Lord and all of His creation. Whether I intend to or not, I find myself talking to God about all sorts of things and praying for others as well; it turns into a quiet time with God. I can’t go hunting every day, but the time with our Father is something that I need every day.

Time alone with God away from the cares of the world is extremely important yet seems to be so elusive! Quiet time is so important in fact, that Jesus demonstrated it for us in Bible; He would wake early and get alone with the Father, or He would escape the crowds and go to a desolate place and pray. In our busy lives with the crowds pressing in, it is easy to get into the rut of not spending time alone with God the way that Jesus did, but rather we get busy with everything else and forget the One who holds it all together.

As we approach the Christmas season with all the shopping, cooking, and family pressures, may we not forget the true meaning of Christmas – the gift of a Savior. Find time to sneak away to your quiet place and just be still. You may not be after wild game, but the time with God alone will fill your bag.

Luke 5:16 But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray

Blessings and Merry Christmas!