Minister’s Message: Making prayer the priority

Time with God is different than other time we spend.

With summer in full force here on the Kenai Peninsula we have been blessed with amazing weather and plenty of opportunities to enjoy Alaska’s engaging environment.

With all the sunshine and activities, I even heard a lifelong Alaskan lament, “When is it going to rain? I am tired from all this playing around!”

The change of seasons offers us all an opportunity to examine our priorities. For many of us the urgency and importance of our priorities influences constant decisions we make about our comfort, health, relationships, needs, job, friends, mood and life in general. Where can we go to get direction and truly find the best way to live?

When Jesus came to earth his mission was to bring humanity back into relationship with God. He spent time drawing people to God through miracles and declaring about the opportunity to be in relationship with God.

Being fully God and man, he also modeled for creation the best way to live. After a long day dedicated to this mission, Jesus had a plan to keep focused: “Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed” (Mark 1:35). Jesus retreated from the busyness of life, found a private place and spent time praying to his Father.

He did not just withdraw from the multitudes, but from his disciples as well. With all the distractions silenced, Jesus had a focused time of refreshment and communion with God. Jesus, being free of sin and evil, still took time to start his day by submitting to the plan of God, his heavenly Father. He also modeled for us a rhythm of health in using prayer to help us navigate through life and making following God a priority.

We make priorities about the things we care the most about. If Jesus had to find a place and time not to be distracted, how much more important it is for us to do the same before the interferences and temptations arise to drown out God’s direction for our day.

It is not that many of us do not care about prayer, it sometimes seems like it becomes an afterthought or plea for help in time of need. Jesus encourages us to make prayer, or simply talking and listening to God, a priority as a chief way of cultivating communion with God.

Early in the morning worked best for Jesus and even Jesus had to get rid of temptations to focus on prayer. Time with God is different than other time we spend. Time with God in prayer will make all your other priorities more manageable and less hectic.

Let prayer time, be your time to rest in God and renew your strength.

Has prayer been dropped as a priority in your life? Why not set some time aside today and let the orchestrator of life direct you in the best way to live?

Frank Alioto is the pastor of Roots Family Church in Soldotna (907-252-0036) and serves as a chaplain in our community.

More in Life

Minister’s Message: How to grow old and not waste your life

At its core, the Bible speaks a great deal about the time allotted for one’s life

Kirsten Dunst, Wagner Moura and Stephen McKinley Henderson appear in “Civil War.” (Promotional photo courtesy A24)
Review: An unexpected battle for empathy in ‘Civil War’

Garland’s new film comments on political and personal divisions through a unique lens of conflict on American soil

What are almost certainly members of the Grönroos family pose in front of their Anchor Point home in this undated photograph courtesy of William Wade Carroll. The cabin was built in about 1903-04 just north of the mouth of the Anchor River.
Fresh Start: The Grönroos Family Story— Part 2

The five-member Grönroos family immigrated from Finland to Alaska in 1903 and 1904

Aurora Bukac is Alice in a rehearsal of Seward High School Theatre Collective’s production of “Alice in Wonderland” at Seward High School in Seward, Alaska, on Thursday, April 11, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Seward in ‘Wonderland’

Seward High School Theatre Collective celebrates resurgence of theater on Eastern Kenai Peninsula

These poppy seed muffins are enhanced with the flavor of almonds. (Photo by Tressa Dale/Peninsula Clarion)
The smell of almonds and early mornings

These almond poppy seed muffins are quick and easy to make and great for early mornings

Bill Holt tells a fishing tale at Odie’s Deli on Friday, June 2, 2017 in Soldotna, Alaska. Holt was among the seven storytellers in the latest session of True Tales Told Live, an occasional storytelling event co-founded by Pegge Erkeneff, Jenny Nyman, and Kaitlin Vadla. (Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion file)
Storytelling series returns with tales about ‘making the most of it’

The next True Tales, Told Live will be held Friday, April 12 at The Goods Sustainable Grocery starting at 6:30 p.m.

Nick Varney
Unhinged Alaska: Sometimes they come back

This following historical incident resurfaced during dinner last week when we were matching, “Hey, do you remember when…?” gotchas

Art by Soldotna High School student Emily Day is displayed as part of the 33rd Annual Visual Feast at the Kenai Art Center on Wednesday, April 3, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Creating art and artists

Exhibition showcases student talent and local art programs

The Canadian steamship Princess Victoria collided with an American vessel, the S.S. Admiral Sampson, which sank quickly in Puget Sound in August 1914. (Otto T. Frasch photo, copyright by David C. Chapman, “O.T. Frasch, Seattle” webpage)
Fresh Start: The Grönroos Family Story — Part 1

The Grönroos family settled just north of the mouth of the Anchor River

Most Read