Gospel Mark 1:32-39
When it was evening, after sunset,
they brought to him all who were ill or possessed by demons.
The whole town was gathered at the door.
He cured many who were sick with various diseases,
and he drove out many demons,
not permitting them to speak because they knew him.
Rising very early before dawn,
he left and went off to a deserted place, where he prayed.
Simon and those who were with him pursued him
and on finding him said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
He told them, “Let us go on to the nearby villages
that I may preach there also.
For this purpose have I come.”
So he went into their synagogues, preaching and driving out demons
throughout the whole of Galilee.
This Gospel story occurs at the beginning of Jesus’s public career. In the verses prior to these, Jesus calls his first apostles: Peter and Andrew his brother, as well as James and John, the sons of Zebedee. They first come to the house of Peter and Jesus cures Peter’s mother in law. Then soon after, Mark tells us, “The whole town was gathered at his door.” In order to find some quiet and alone time for prayer, Jesus rises early, before the dawn and slips off to a “deserted place.” Despite his need to be alone with His Father and the Holy Spirit, Simon and the others pursue him and say, “Everyone is looking for you.”
Mothers of young children may often feel as though “the entire town” is gathered at the door. Young children always want access to their moms. It doesn’t matter if one has ten kids or two kids or even one child, moms struggle to find quiet times and places. And if moms do not find the space and time to meet God in prayer, they will be tired, overwhelmed and frustrated.
God wants mothers to be happy and peaceful. He does not call women to this esteemed vocation so that they can become frazzled, stressed and frustrated.
If we feel this way, we must remember that Jesus knows what it is to be followed around, to have constant demands made of him, to be nagged. We mothers must come to Jesus and place our harried lives in his hands and ask for his help.
Beloved Jesus, everyone wanted you to be with them, to solve their problems, to keep them company, to acknowledge their work. Jesus, you found time to be alone in prayer. Show me how to find that time without neglecting my responsibilities or exhausting myself.