We’re in quarantine, unable to communicate and see those we love and enjoy. The state of isolation is becoming normative, and we’re struggling to embrace it. Our struggle, however, is to be expected because we know from Genesis 2 that it’s not good for us to be alone. But this is precisely where we must make the important distinction between isolation and solitude:
Isolation is when we are alone, cut-off from communication with others.
Solitude is where we are alone with God.
We are now in a very unique position to turn our cold isolation into a rich, warm, and fruitful solitude with God.
The time is rich to meet with God. Daniel got alone with God three times a day (Daniel 3:10), and Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed (Luke 5:16). These men practiced solitude and lived out of the overflow of their relationship with their Father. The rhythms of our lives are typically so demanding, but as people who are now forced into our homes we all of a sudden have rich soil to grow our relationship with God.
We now have unique opportunities to turn from our crisis to Christ.
The time is rich to meet with God’s Word. In our digital age we have lost the art and practice of reading and reflecting on anything of depth or value. But as people of God we’re called to be stewards of the truth, and how else can we do this unless we read and reflect upon it? Where else is the truth found other than in God’s Word? I’m even hearing from younger people that they’re tired of being on their phones because they’re so bored.
Now more than ever we have great opportunities for God’s Word to fill our hearts and minds.
The time is rich to show our family love. Do you love someone who is a high-risk case? Have you taken the precautions necessary to keep them ahead of COVID-19? Have you been in touch with them about what is going on? It’s important to use this time to take care of our parents and grandparents.
It’s important to start new traditions and practices in our homes for our children.
The time is always rich to meet with the body of Christ. We’re saved to be together in community with each other. We can’t function in isolation and we weren’t meant to. You might say they you faith in Christ, but faith in Christ is always connected to a community of believers.
Although we can’t physically be with each other it’s still so important that we continue to meet through the blessing of technology.
Waves of fear and peace have been flowing over me the past week. I’ve been on a rollercoaster. At high points I have nothing but certainty in God’s hope and plan for my life. That is, Christ has final say over all sickness and death, and nothing in this world that I could lose would even matter in light of the eternity that I will have with him. But at my lowest points I have been in tears, in fear for those I love that are not in good health. And though this season has caused a great fear in me, it has also drawn me so much closer to the Lord. Times of crisis have always proven to be a double-edged sword.
Some will flee from the Lord into isolation, others will flee to him in solitude. Where will you flee?