“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. 36 Simon and his companions went to look for him, 37 and when they found him, they exclaimed: “Everyone is looking for you!” 38 Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” 39 So he traveled throughout Galilee, preaching in their synagogues and driving out demons.” (Mark 1:35—39)

Routines are so important in one’s life. And as important as they may be, some routines may not be helpful as well. Some routines also may hinder a person’s potential and ability to get into new things. Routines speak of a person’s priorities and values. Routines are also remarkable measures of someone who is faithful to their values and priorities. Routines also show a disciplined life.
Jesus showed here in the text his routine and how he starts his days. Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up and left the house, and went off to a solitary place where he prayed.
This is a routine I have been encouraged by. Early morning is the best time for me to hear the word of God and let him speak to me through his word. It is a time to reflect and pray for many different things that are about to happen. Early morning is a time that we can pray into our schedule for God’s guidance and let his Holy Spirit direct our day.
Peter and his companions came looking for Jesus, and they found him and said, EVERYONE IS LOOKING FOR YOU! Jesus must connect with his Father before the demands of everyone else starts filing in. Jesus knew how to GET UP AND GET AWAY from everyone for him to hear and connect with his father. I, too, must learn to resist the sense of being needed by people to get my own soul and spirit in the right place.
Even though Jesus heard from Peter that EVERYONE IS LOOKING FOR YOU, Jesus already got his sight of his next assignment. He was already thinking of going to the next place where he must preach also. Jesus was not bound by the NEED OF EVERYONE ELSE. Jesus knew what he was supposed to do.
A time of prayer is a good time to break from the repetition of our schedule and seek God’s guidance for our next step. Jesus was NOT led by his daily Routine. He was led by his Father to fulfill his purpose on earth. Though schedules and plans are important, God must always approve our steps in what to do. Jesus makes clear why he came. He came not to entertain everyone, but to reach everyone as he preaches and teaches. Routines must serve the purpose and the mission. Routines must be subject to the leading of the Holy Spirit to fulfill his purpose, mission, and vision. Jesus said to Peter, “Let us go somewhere else—to the nearby villages—so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” Routine has a purpose and a function, and that is to accommodate the vision and the mission of God.

I know I have healthy routines that serve the purpose of my calling, but sometimes I fail the discipline to be faithful to those routines. I want to always be faithful and to be disciplined to keep healthy routines as well as be led by the Holy Spirit daily. I want to pray more about many things in my journey, so I may not be distracted from my purpose and calling. As I plan, I will be flexible and sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leadership in my life, so I can do his will.

Jesus, I am grateful for your word reminding me to have a healthy routine and yet be sensitive to the leading of your Holy Spirit. I want to fulfill the mission and vision that you have given me. Give me the courage to stand against routines that distract and lead me astray from your purpose. I look to you today as you lead and guide me to fulfill what you called me to do. Amen!