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With what is happening around the world, talking about prayer seems like a good idea. Since Jesus is our best example of prayer, as a teen, I studied where and when He used to pray. The Gospel of Mark tells us that Jesus would get up very early in the morning, and while it was still dark, he would get up, leave the house, and find a solitary place to pray (Mark 1:35).

In my youth, I often wondered why Jesus would pray early in the morning. I have never been a morning person, so in my teenage years, to pray that early seemed impossible and even unnecessary to me. Also, even though prayer is intimate, I have always loved to pray with people in times of great need. Jesus choosing such a tough place to pray did not make sense to me then, but it does now.

Now that I have experienced stressful, sleepless nights, I know why Jesus prayed so early in the morning. Watching the news and hearing what is going on in the war between Israel and Gaza, I know why Jesus prayed while it was still dark. Now that I know we all experience pain differently, I understand why Jesus prayed lonely prayers. It is easy to feel alone in grief, for sometimes, even when others experience the same loss, they do not experience the same pain level.

My friends, the beauty of being in Christ is that Jesus, our High Priest, empathizes with us no matter what we go through. He does, not because He is God, but because He was a man like us. Child of God, in stressful times, you can cry out to Him for peace because Jesus is the Prince of Peace. As the Light of the World, He can guide you in moments of uncertainty. Remember that He who experienced bitter loneliness on the cross has promised never to forsake us.

That is why Jesus chose such tough spots to pray. He did it to understand us. He knows how we feel. The Bible tells us Christ constantly intercedes for us. He no longer does it in dark, lonely places, for He is at the Father's right side but still prays for us. If you are in a tough place, take heart. Whether you feel Him or not, Jesus is there with you. Your needs are always before our Heavenly Father, for Christ is ALWAYS praying for you.

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