1997-03-06 - Spiritual Discipline: Solitude and Silence

The Spiritual Disciplines Series, Part 6

This is the final installment in my series of devotionals concerning spiritual disciplines. My prayer is that you have found these practical, and that you will practice the disciplines as our Lord leads you.

Solitude and Silence, great-sounding words, neat concept, but practical and obtainable? We are bombarded with noise from the moment we wake until we retire at night. Think about it. We wake up to a clock radio blaring, turn the TV on during breakfast, listen to more radio in the shower, hop in the car with the cassette player going, enter our workplace with our minds racing about the urgencies awaiting us, and then it's back home again with a mind cluttered with noise. Where is God in all this? When do we have time to be still and know our Lord?

Solitude and silence are the key to all the Spiritual Disciplines. You can't effectively read your Bible, pray or meditate without clearing out the clutter of noise -- whether the noise is external noise or the internal noises of your mind. I am firmly convinced that distraction is the evil one's great tool to prevent us from becoming closer to God.

Matthew 14:23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone.

Mark 1:35 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.

Luke 4:42 At daybreak Jesus went out to a solitary place. The people were looking for him and when they came to where he was, they tried to keep him from leaving them.

Psalm 62:1 My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him.

Isaiah 30:15 This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says:"In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength."

The Bible is very clear that God expects us to spend quiet time with Him in His presence. I have found it helpful to spend my solitude time with God, first thing in the morning. I go to the same room and the same chair every morning.

It is also very helpful to take time during the day to have just 5 minutes of solitude whenever you can grab the time -- in the car, in your office, at your desk in school, or wherever you may be. Just try to focus on Christ and clear the clutter from your mind. Let Christ replenish you.

Dear Father, we live in such a busy culture. We all move at a faster and faster pace, as life marches on around us. Lord, help us to slow down, be still and know that You are with us. Help us clear our minds so we can focus on You and grow in You. In Jesus' name, Amen.

David Massey