When things get out of control, I bet we all wish we had one of these. If only it was as easy as pressing “the big red button.” The world could just stop and we could regain control. We try and do this from time to time. We call them “vacations.” But as most of us know, they end up being planning nightmares and tire us out more than fill us up. Yes, yes, there’s plenty of pictures and memories that come out of them, so they’re worth it in the end. But it seems that even then, on vacation, we could use that big red button.
35 In the morning, while it was still very dark, he got up and went out to a deserted place, and there he prayed.36 And Simon and his companions hunted for him. —Mark 1
Don’t worry, Jesus couldn’t catch a break either. But he hit the button anyway. Growing in our faith means finding opportunities to hit the big red button. That button reveals itself in many ways. Sometimes it’s turning off the phone or the computer. Other times it’s finding a quiet place or even getting out of town for a change of scenery. But remember, it’s about removing yourself—for however long—for the purpose of being with God.
Look at the Exodus. The people were oppressed by Pharaoh for various reasons. God’s purpose in freeing them wasn’t for liberation. It was for service (Exodus 7.16). The people would trade a life of oppression by a selfish king for a life of service and worship to a self-less God. But there would be work involved, nonetheless. It’s like Jesus said,
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. —Matthew 11
He’s gentle, he’s humble, but it’s still a yoke. Work is a part of who we are. But in order to really do it, we have to draw close to God. God want’s us to hit the big red button, but for the purpose of finding that peace and assurance that comes from a loving relationship with a caring God.
How will you hit the big red button? What form will it take? How soon will you do it? God does await those who retreat and seek him out. Jesus found him often in the wilderness or on the mountain. Where’s your wilderness, your mountain? Go there, hit the button, and worship God.
May it be so, O Lord.