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It has come to deep-down self-examination time for me. You see, I have a real problem: there are so many people, causes and issues that I care about, it just about tears me apart more often than I care to acknowledge. The high-decibel voice, the nervous tremor, the tears, the sleeplessness, etc., too often, too many, too much. How did Jesus deal with the thronging multitudes, everyone wanting/needing something from Him every time they saw Him? I've been thinking about that. What constant pressure! What limited time! And He was as human as we are. He needed rest, food, drink, relaxation but when, where, how? He loved them enough to die for them, but their living demands were crushing and never-ending. Yet there is nothing in the four Gospels that indicates He was ever hurried, impatient or overwhelmed by the common people and their needs. The temple money-changers, Pharisees, teachers of the Law, scribes and certain others of that ilk irritated Him and elicited sharp words and actions from Him. But the crowds He handled patiently, kindly, lovingly, never dispassionate or uncaring. How did He do it?
And then I remembered the long alone-time He spent with the Father out on the mountainside in early morning hours or all night. I remembered He once told His disciples, "Come apart and rest awhile." Is that what gave Him control and peace and perseverance? Is that where He drew His strength and patience? I think it's worth a try. Instead of ranting and raving over people and situatios, maybe I should regularly withdraw "far from the madding crowd" rushing forward at fevered pace to who knows where or what?--and just be still and alone with God for long intervals. Maybe somehow wisdom and strength are replenished in the solitude of communion. Jesus was even-handed, kind, warm and accepting of pressure, antagonism, and inconvenience (no place to lay His head). If we would follow Him, we need to put practices in place that will allow us to be like Him in our association with people and things of this world. We'll be more useful and proabably last longer. Precious Father, dear Jesus, forgive your slow-learning, wayward child! Help me to slow down and stop thinking that if I run fast enough, I can "fix" everything and everybody. How foolish I have been, always shedding more heat than light, more confusion than calmness. Please grant me the wisdom from above so that I can be more useful and serve here on earth from the Savior's perspective. In His holy name, Amen
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