And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God. ~Luke 6:12
In the Bible we read of several instances of what I term “mountaintop praying”. Moses did mountaintop praying often. David did mountaintop praying. Elijah did mountaintop praying. Jesus at least on three occasions went to a mountain and there prayed. In each of these instances the one who prayed sought to go further and higher in his praying. This morning, we want to see the importance and impact of mountaintop praying.
There is the seclusion in the praying.
Jesus literally prayed in a mountain area. We are not told if he went inside of a cave. We are not told if he got beside some boulders or a tree. However, one thing is certain: Jesus went far enough away to remove the distractions of life from him so that he could be alone with God. mountaintop praying is an isolated place and allocated time where we get alone with God. No one else, nothing else: just me and God. Our souls are filled too often with the hurried rush of the day. We need to be secluded so that God knows he has our full attention.
There is the strategy in the praying.
Mountaintop praying must be sought out when there are significant and strategic decisions to be made. Jesus went there to pray over the names and lives of various men who were counted among His followers. He went there to get God the Father’s approval on the names of twelve men who he would train to become the leadership of the local New Testament church. Big and important decisions demand that we go high into the mountain to pray. Great Bible leaders have been the result of this kind of praying. The sending of preachers and the birthing of new churches has always been the result of mountaintop praying.
There is the sacrifice in the praying.
He continued all night in prayer. We need to pause and consider what that means. First, He gave up his sleep for an entire night. This meant weariness, fatigue, and a compromised immune system. Most of us love our sleep and find it difficult to give it up. Jesus prayed all night. Second, He continued all night. There were no breaks. There were no interruptions. He typified praying without ceasing. Continuous and uninterrupted praying reveals cracks and sin in our life that we would otherwise not see. Continuous praying clarifies God’s vision. Continuous praying humbles us. Continuous draws us closer to God. Continuous praying separates for us the eternal from the earthly. Continuous praying prompts us to action.
There is the settlement in the praying.
When Jesus completed that night of prayer and came down from the mountain, they were etched in His mind twelve simple men He would pour Himself into. Eleven of these men would constitute the advancement of the entity known as the church. When we read the gospels, we do not read where Jesus was ever uncertain of the capabilities of these men. He did not select them for the purpose of firing them. He selected them for the purpose of putting HIS FIRE into them. When He chose those twelve it was settled what the mind of God was in the matter of leadership succession.
Whether alone, with our family, or with the leadership team within the church, mountaintop praying is an indispensable necessity for advancing the cause of Christ in our lives. Go find your mountain and spend time alone with God.
Have a mountaintop God morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Genesis 28-30