I have always been intrigued that Jesus, with only three years as Messiah and under high demand, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” Luke 5:6 Solitude with the Father was the pattern of His life and ministry. He also encouraged the Twelve to the same, “Come with me to a quiet place and get some rest.” Mark 6:42 That invitation and encouragement to step aside from the busyness of life and ministry and be alone with Jesus for rest, reflection and renewal is still vital.
In spite of this need, I fear that Ruth Haley Barton exposes the pattern of most of our lives. In her book, Invitation to Solitude and Silence, she states: “I believe silence is the most challenging, the most needed and the least experienced of spiritual disciplines among evangelical Christians today. It is much easier to talk about it and read about it that to actually become quiet. We are a very busy, wordy and heady faith tradition.”
I actually find great value in solitude with Jesus in several different ways. First it is a place of rest and renewal from the busyness of ministry life. Second it a way to discover more of the heart of Jesus through meditating on His words in the Gospels. Third it a place of discernment to discover Jesus direction for life and ministry.
I invite you to attend a Retreat for Solitude with Jesus on January 29-30, 2018. For more information and to register visit Lamb of God, Flower Mound, or call Pastor Walt Waiser (817-797-8974).
By Pastor Walt Waiser