“But Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.” John 8.1
Scripture tells us nothing about what Jesus was doing on the Mount of Olives this night. All we know is from John 7:53 that everyone else went home after the day in the Temple, Jesus goes to the Mount of Olives. Did he pray? Sleep? Fast? Teach? Weep? Write? Walk? If I were to guess, I would say Jesus was taking an intermission.
In the middle of his mission, Jesus took a break. His day had been full and we know from John 8:2 that Jesus returns to the Temple once again to teach, to preach, to be tested and tried by the Jewish Religious leaders the next morning. In the midst of all of this, full time ministry, popularity and persecution, Jesus takes a break.
Jesus gives himself one night. Maybe he slept in the house of Mary and Martha for we know they were in Bethany on the other side of the Mount of Olives from Jerusalem. Or perhaps he pulled an all-nighter with the Father. We have no certain way of knowing. But what I do know is from his previous moments of being alone with the God is Jesus valued time alone. Jesus would often take time away to pray very early in the morning or go up on a mountain by himself. In another instance he sent his disciples across the Sea of Galilee without him while he remained on the other side.
Personally, I love alone time. Yet I also love time with family and friends. As a pastor, who tries to model my ministry after Jesus, time with people matters. I realize this but also know that it takes emotional, physical and spiritual energy to engage. Ministers should at all times he concerned with peoples souls — looking into their hearts, helping them take essential steps to further their own relationship with the Lord.
As Jesus took an intermission, so should we. Take time to play, to pray, to rest, to work, to ready your hands for the task that lies ahead — the task of making disciples of for Jesus Christ.
“O Lord God, you are good. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for allowing me to take time away, to slow down, to consider your ways as higher than my ways. Thank you for forgiving me of my sins and renewing my heart for you. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen