NOTE: My blog has traditionally been all business, but for at least a little while it is going to become intensely personal. During Lent, the 40 days leading up to Easter, I am participating in a photo challenge. The way it works is that the organizers have given us a list of words, and every day we are supposed to take and share a picture based upon that word. Because I hardly ever do things the easy way, I am also attempting to write a devotional that goes with these pictures. I have not been very consistent, due to some craziness that we call LIFE , but with God’s help I will continue to write a few as I can. Last year I participated in a similar challenge. This link will take you to my 2013 Lenten challenge. This years challenge is entirely blog-based. This year the challenge is sponsored by Catholic Sistas.
Please pray for me and/ or bear with me, and if this isn’t your cup of tea, just keep on checking for portrait posts in between these challenges — or check back in after Easter.
I’ve started three or four times to write a devotional for the topic of SOLITUDE, and every time I just rehash all the same old things about being still and quiet and waiting for God to speak.
I want a new and exciting solitude experience to share with the half dozen or so people who actually read these Lenten challenges –WHEN I even manage to get them written.
The writer of Ecclesiastes tells us that there is nothing new under the sun, and I’m starting to think that my efforts in this challenge are all in vain. Maybe I am the one who should take a little time to be alone with God rather than to try and write about it.
God hasn’t given me anything new or particularly inspiring to write. But then, I haven’t TAKEN THE TIME to be still and listen to what He has to say. No wonder my brain is mushy.
Jesus often went off to a quiet place to pray, and I think that’s just one of many ways that he set a good example for us to follow.
He didn’t have the constant dinging, beeping, and vibrating vying for His attention that we’ve all become accustomed to with our smart phones and other techie devices, but he had crowds constantly pushing up against him clamoring just to touch His robe so that they could be healed. And he was so consumed with COMPASSION that he wanted to be available for every single one of them. It must have been exhausting for him. Still, he would step away from the crowds into a quiet cove of a garden or He would climb into a fishing boat and pushout onto the water for some peace and quiet.
For us, finding a quiet place to open our hearts and pray can be as simple – or as gut-wrenching—as turning off the smart phone.
Try it. It’s harder than it sounds … at first. Then we realize that texts, e-mails, phone calls can wait.
I’ve had a very busy chaotic past couple of weeks and the coming week doesn’t look much calmer, but I think that Sunday after we get home from church I will actually be able to go out into my backyard – just me and my little shovel, with a few tomato plants, and maybe a couple of flats of annuals.
That’s where God and I have our best conversations. He meets me where I am, but I have to clear the garbage out of my own head in order to keep from running right past Him.
So today, I pray that each of us has a few moments of quiet peaceful SOLITUDE so that we can hear and experience the very specific and personal blessings that he is holding in his hand to pour out onto our heads.
Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth. – Psalm 46:10