“In the morning, long before dawn, he got up and left the house, and went off to a lonely place and prayed there.”

Mark 1:35

Tuesday, 13 October 2020

Mark 1:35-39

When Jesus came back from this time of reflection, the disciples said that everyone was looking for him. Jesus replied that they needed to go “elsewhere to the neighbouring country towns so I can preach there too because that is why I came.”

Jesus went to pray to seek the Father’s will. He spent time with his “Abba” seeking wisdom and clarity. At significant moments in his life, Jesus withdrew to prayer, for example, before choosing his disciples. Jesus went into the desert for an extended period before he started his public ministry.

Make time and space to reflect and listen is important. We are often deluged by so much information that we can’t settle, and it isn’t easy to get in touch with the deeper layers of what is happening within us.

We don’t pause long enough to sit with the different options in prayer, asking God to show us what will be the right option.

How do we listen? Make a dedicated time each day, especially when we are in the process of making a significant decision. Sit with God and ask for wisdom and light to be able to see the situation through God’s eyes.

Find a place where you can be uninterrupted: your room, perhaps a garden or a nearby church.

Begin by asking for the grace needed to make a good decision. As we prayerfully reflect on the alternatives, it can be helpful to engage in a heart-to-heart conversation with the Lord expressing how we feel and sensing what we hear him saying to us in response.

Gracious God,

Help us to make time, to pause and reflect. To become inwardly quiet, so that we can hear your still small voice.


Dr Annemarie Paulin-Campbell

Dr Annemarie Paulin-Campbell has worked in the area of Ignatian Spirituality for 19 years and heads up the work of the Jesuit Institute School of Spirituality. Her primary focus is the training and supervision of spiritual directors and the giving of retreats. She is also a registered Psychologist and her PhD focused on the interface between Christian Spirituality and Psychology. Annemarie is an editorial advisor to “The Way” journal of Spirituality and has authored a number of articles relating to the training of Spiritual Directors in an African context. She has contributed to several books, most recently co-authoring a book of Lenten Reflections: “Long Journey to the Resurrection”. She has contributed to international conferences and consultations in Spirituality in the United Kingdom; the United States; Rome; Spain, Ethiopia, Kenya and Zimbabwe.

a.paulin-campbell@jesuitinstitute.org.za @annemariepc_c
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