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Where to go, when tragedy strikes (Part 2)

Rev. Enoch Thompson | May 10, 2023 | Matthew 14:13


When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place. Hearing of this, the crowds followed him on foot from the towns. Matthew 14:13 (NIV)


Turn to the afflicted to assist them, and turn to the Lord for His support, but there is yet something to be done in the face of the afflictions and dangers that confront the Christian-stranger in our journey of life. Sometimes we must take steps to ensure our safety and security. We must not tempt our God by exposing ourselves to dangerous people and dangerous circumstances. We must take steps towards self-preservation while we trust God to preserve us.

We are told that “When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place.” Having tasted the blood of one saintly soul Herod would have been inspired, and Herodias would have given him all the support, to pursue the Lord Jesus as well. In the Gospels, we see how many times the Lord kept Himself away from the Jewish leaders or escaped from their grip (e.g. Luke 4:29-30).

We can also conclude that the Lord Jesus removed into a solitary place so He could reflect and pray to God the Father. Sometimes when we stay in the place of the disaster, we are not able to think well and refocus on the continuation of life and ministry. Periodic retreats provide the opportunity to look at issues with a clearer mind, and a more relaxed spirit.

We are aware of situations where the affliction itself binds us and does not give us the leisure of moving away to a physical retreat. For example, looking after a sick loved one, working under a tyrannical antagonistic boss, and handling piles and piles of workload that do not give you space even to take care of your physical and family needs. In such situations, we must develop the spiritual discipline of retreating while on the battlefront. This is a spiritual retreat; you remain at rest while in the difficult environment. You tune your mind to love and smile even though things are rough, (this is not a call to hypocrisy, it is the exercise of your victory over the forces that are seeking to suffocate you


Can you arrange to have some time away from the people and circumstances that threaten your sanity, and spend some time alone with yourself and with God? If not, will you begin to shut the inner door and tune the inner person up, rising above the situation as you walk in it? It works!


Lord Jesus, you know how much many of your people need to get away and be alone with you and ourselves. Give us the wisdom to make those decisions and act on them. But where this is impossible, please lead us to the higher retreat of running to you in the inner being and finding rest in the midst of the storm. For your dear Name’s sake, Amen.



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The Baptist Daily Devotional is a collection of God-inspired messages that will help you grow in your faith and walk with Christ. Each day, you will find a scripture passage, a reflection, a prayer and a challenge to apply God's word to your life. The devotional is written by pastors and leaders of the Ghana Baptist Convention, who share their insights and experiences from serving God in various contexts and ministries. For example, you will learn how to trust God in times of trouble, how to share the gospel with others, how to pray effectively, how to deal with temptation, how to handle conflict and more. Whether you are a new believer or a mature Christian, the Baptist Daily Devotional will inspire you, encourage you and equip you to live for God's glory.
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