At about that same time he climbed a mountain to pray. He was there all night in prayer before God. The next day he summoned his disciples; from them he selected twelve he designated as apostles:
Simon, whom he named Peter,
Andrew, his brother,
James, son of Alphaeus,
Simon, called the Zealot,
Judas, son of James,
Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
Luke 6: 12-16 The Message
How do you make big decisions? Here we read about Jesus preparing to make one of the most significant decisions in His ministry: who will be His disciples in ministry, during His remaining three years upon this earth? Given that this dozen would become his constant companions, plus the nucleus of the early church, the stakes are enormous for Jesus!
This decision is so significant that Jesus feels the need to prepare for it. So how does Jesus prepare for such a momentous decision? He spends a whole night in a personal prayer retreat. He even does so in a remote location upon a mountain, so there will be fewer distractions.
Should everyone spend a night up on a mountain in prayer? Of course not. While some might enjoy the experience, others would not find it helpful. Yet regardless of our comfort level with nighttime mountaineering, we all can learn from Jesus’ example. The lesson for all of us is that prayer needs to be an integral part of our decisions, especially major ones. If Jesus needed to spend time in prayer, why would we think we don’t need to do the same?
Let us remember to prayerfully turn to the Lord as we weigh different choices, seeking the Lord’s directions in our lives. The next time you face a major decision, or even a little one, spend some time with God in quiet prayer. You will be thankful that you did…
Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
Guide me in every decision I make throughout the day, so that I might live a life worthy of Your love. When I face major decisions, remind me that You are always available. I can turn to You with every choice I must make. I praise You, for Your wisdom exceeds my own. Therefore, prompt me to talk things over with You, especially before I make life-changing decisions. I pray this prayer in the name of Your son, and my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.