It was Sunday afternoon and all my family was occupied. Dave had gone outside to do yard work, while our two black labs lolled about in the grass. My youngest daughters had been lured next door to play with 4-year-old Robbie. I didn’t expect to see my teenager anytime soon. Like a squirrel hording nuts for the winter, she’d saved all of her homework for Sunday afternoon, and she’d just disappeared into her cluttered cave of a room to hibernate—every bit as growly as a tired grizzly.
Sensing I wouldn’t be missed, I pulled on my walking shoes, fired up the mini-van and drove to a place called Bluff Point. When I go to Bluff Point, I walk along a path that follows the shore of an inlet from Long Island Sound. The path stretches out for two miles and leads to the bluff- an impressive rocky outcropping that rises some 30 feet or so above the water. Standing on the edge you can see endless blue, a distance lighthouse, and on a clear day, the tiniest hint of Long Island peeking over the horizon.
I set off down the path, the sun sprinkling diamonds on the ripples of the water to my right. To my left was thick forest. The trees celebrated autumn by tossing leaf-confetti, which fluttered all around me. As I walked, my mind awakened to things easily forgotten in the daily grind of life.
I’d spent my week alternating researching and writing with home schooling, housekeeping, and church service, all the while fighting email addiction. God wanted me to spend time with Him too, so I squeezed him in here and there, but those appointments had been superficial—Bible speed-reading, prayers mumbled while half my brain insisted on thinking about my next novel chapter.
Now, away from the computer, the phone, the kitchen floor that’s perpetually covered in dog hair, and the other things that demand my attention, I could relax. I drank in the beauty of creation and took time to really talk with the Creator. I pondered the words of that morning’s sermon. I even found inspiration for writing.
Jesus knew getting away with God was important. Time and again in the gospels, we see Jesus drawing away from the crowds, finding a quiet spot, and spending time with His Father. He came to earth to do His Father’s will, but never did His work take the place of His relationship with the Father.
God is pleased when we do everything “as unto the Lord,” being a spouse, a parent, an employee, a church worker, or a writer who glorifies Him through our work. But He doesn’t desire to be just someone we work for. He wants us to take time off, walk with Him, pour out our hearts, tell Him our hopes and fears and secrets. As we give priority to this intimate relationship, He’ll refresh us, inspire us, and give us strength for all we have to do.
Life getting a little crazy? Sneak away with your Father and be refreshed.
Luke 6:12 One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God.