Wars raged in my head as I went out the door each day. Battles were being fought. Armageddon. Satan and his minions coming up from the abyss, waging war against God’s saints. By the end of my “quiet” time I was keyed up and ready to fight the world. I couldn’t begin my day like this – it was unsettling.
In the limited time I had each morning, I wasn’t resting in God’s presence. I was analyzing, studying, and searching for teaching points, while I studied the book of Revelation. It seemed like mornings were the only time I could find for this. But my morning quiet time quickly became quiet turmoil.
There are passages of scripture that I can study and ponder without leaving me in such a state of upheaval, however Revelation is not one of them. I left my time of studying God’s word distracted and agitated. Many times, the mood followed me throughout my day.
In her new book, Peace for a Lifetime, Lisa Murray offers these words of advice:
To embrace solitude, find fifteen to twenty minutes daily to be absent from people and simply sit quietly in God’s presence. This is not a time for structured Bible study or prayer (Page 66).
I’m no stranger to the spiritual disciplines of silence and solitude. But I’ve never practiced them, either. Why would I? I’m alone most days at work. The silence is deafening. Why would I make this a practice?
But this past week, I was forced into it. Yep, the flu bug bit. I was down for the count, quarantined to the bedroom. The first two days I slept. On the third day, there was a resurrection of sorts. Wide awake, but too weak to move, unable to concentrate on books or TV, all I could do was lay in bed. I had no energy to be productive. My get up and go had run far, far away. The only thing I could do was lay there like a jellyfish. And listen. And think.
I heard the quietness of my home, the soft whir of the ceiling fan. I heard the birds singing a chorus outside. I heard Peace, and was overwhelmed with it. I never dreamed that I would feel such peace, and at the same time be so sick. In the silence and solitude, I felt His presence. Holding me, nurturing me to health. I felt loved.
Solitude is the place where we can hear His voice speak of His great love for us. (Peace for a Lifetime, Page 67)
Isn’t that the way it is with life sometimes? It can be unsettled. Internal wars are raging, external trials and illnesses are wearing us down. Yet, instead of slowing ourselves, we keep running into the storm and turmoil. We keep ourselves overly productive and busy, to feel like we are accomplishing something, anything. In reality, we are preoccupied and weary.
Lisa puts it this way in her book:
Only when we become still can we silence the outside world…turn down the volume on the noise that keeps us distracted and exhausted. (Peace for a Lifetime, Page 65)
As for me? I enjoyed my time of quiet with Jesus. I believe I’ll be adding a little silence and solitude to my routine. I believe I NEED it – a time of resting in God. Just me and Him.
How about you? Has the hustle and bustle and noise of life got you distracted? Listen to the words of Jesus (Mark 6:31):
Then Jesus said, “Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.”
Make time today to slip away with Him.
Until next week, grace be with you,
I was honored to be on the launch team for Lisa’s Murray’s new book, Peace for a Lifetime. In her book, Lisa shares keys to cultivating a life that’s deeply rooted, filled with peace and emotional abundance. You won’t want to miss it! All commenters on this post will be entered in a drawing to receive a FREE copy of Peace for a Lifetime!