May 15, 2024

In 2024, we will strive to become more like Jesus by rediscovering the ancient practices of prayer, study, sabbath, celebration, and many more. Our knowledge of scripture, coupled with studying how Jesus lived his life while on earth, will help us become people that overflow with the goodness of God. Wednesday email devotionals will highlight the practices that have been discussed on the previous Sunday.

After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.  Later that night he was there alone.


Matthew 14:23


I’m an early riser; people who know my usual schedule might feel that it is crazy just how early I wake up most mornings. With two young children, our home usually carries a good bit of noise in it. As any parent can attest, when the kids are awake it is scarier when it is silent than when the volume seems deafening (which with two self-professed “loud kids” is the norm for our family). What I’ve found is that I can’t give my attention and devotion to the practice of studying Scripture and prayer when anyone else is awake.


So I set my alarm for an hour which is not when I want to be awake but when I need to be awake to take care of myself. I make a cup of coffee and curl up in my recliner in our den and study the Word, and then I sit in silence with my only companions our dog, Butch, and the Lord Himself. The quiet allows me to filter out the stories that are in my head, that white noise that tries to take control of my thoughts, and to read words that I’ve read more times than I can now count and find the newness in them that God wants for me to find. But I’ll also be honest: that silence can be a bit uncomfortable and there are mornings when I’d really rather be surrounded by my family than be awake by myself.


In those moments, I remember that Jesus has set us a wonderful example in how he approached times of silence and solitude. Our Messiah would make certain to carve out places where he could recenter himself with his connection to his Father—places where he could listen without the distractions of the disciples and the crowd that followed him to learn. I try to remember that I cannot be an effective pastor, father, husband, or friend without continually renewing my connection with God. That connection requires that I sometimes step out of the comfortable places that I have made for myself to spend time in solitude alone with the Lord.

For Reflection

When do you make time for you and God to renew your relationship?


What does this process look like for you?


If you’re struggling to find the way to accomplish this, who might you talk with to seek help?


God, you seek to speak to us every moment of every day, yet all too often we have made our lives too busy and have filled our minds with noise that drowns out your voice.  Help us to reconnect with you, to renew our relationship with you, and to have ears that are clear to hear your voice.  In Jesus’ name we pray; amen.

Rev. Scott Tucker
Pastor for Grand Adults