We talked yesterday about spending time alone with Jesus in an effort to seek healing and restoration for our hearts and souls. Today, I want to share with you a few obstacles you may face on the journey to breakthrough in this area. Once you have found a peaceful place and are sitting alone with no distractions, I need to warn you that it won’t be easy to go straight to communion with your Heavenly Father. Unfortunately, the devil is going to try and keep you from experiencing the blessing that comes through the discipline of solitude. The first challenge you will face is anxiety. As soon as you quiet your mind, you will be bombarded by thoughts of a million things you “should” or “could” be doing. If that happens, I urge you to write those things on a sheet of paper and then put them out of your mind.
The next thing you will face is boredom. This is when it’s really important to press in and not give up, because it’s the time you will be most tempted to grab your phone or find some other form of distraction. Interestingly, boredom is really just a surface emotion for the core issue, which is loneliness. You see, oftentimes when we say we’re bored, what we’re actually experiencing is the pain of being alone and not knowing what to do. Though it hurts, if you stay in that loneliness, you will ultimately find yourself pouring your heart out to God and seeking more of His presence.
Friend, when you are in your peaceful place, I encourage you to push through anxiety and boredom until you come to a place of isolation. Only there can you cry out to Jesus in desperation, and as you do, something amazing happens! As Henri Nouwen said, “Loneliness turns to solitude and you get in touch with the Holy Spirit.” Once that occurs, your heart is full and you wonder how you ever lived without such encounters. Though it requires time and discipline, the more often you seek the Lord in silence and solitude, the easier and more fruitful it becomes! Isn’t that awesome news?