Sonshine, bright light, happiness, joy, colorful, delight . . . . . these are words that come to mind when I think about FREEDOM!!! These are the things that I want FLOODING MY HEART!!!!! This is where I want to live, 24/7!!!!!!!
Here is what I know to be true in my life . . . . . when life gets hard, or I’m up against a huge challenge, I want to isolate instead of running towards Jesus and Christian community!!! I want to go home, crawl into my bed, dive under the covers and be left ALONE!!!!! I’m still trying to come up with a Scripture to justify this action!!!!! I have yet to find one!!!
What I do find is that we are NOT meant to do life alone!! We are NOT meant to battle the enemy single-handedly!!! We are NOT meant to isolate!!!!!!!!!!
DISCLAIMER . . . . yes there is solitude!!! This is key and critical in the life of the believer!!!! But this is totally different than isolation!!!!! It’s the attitude of the heart that matters!!!
Isolation . . . . hiding, ignoring life, keeping people away because they annoy us, usually accompanied by a pity-party attitude, or a desire to be sad, lonely, hopeless, scared and alone. This is a place we seem to slip into either gradually or quickly. We had no plan to get there and no plan to get out of there either!! When one stays here they have a tendency to get sucked in deeper to isolation and being alone . . . totally alone. This can be a very Godless place!!
Solitude . . . . planned time away with the goal of being quiet and alone with Jesus. The reason is for spiritual direction, leading, enjoy His presence, grow closer to Him. It’s a spiritual discipline that has an intentional starting and stopping time. Solitude is intention and done with purpose, design and desire. The outcome of time away is a deeper walk with Jesus and more resolve in the life we live.
DISCLAIMER #2 . . . . . there can be a mix of the two at times, but the heart is the judge of what the heart is truly doing.
Here is my point . . . . . I can fall easily into isolation and I don’t think I’m alone in this either!! If I am alone too long I slip into isolation mode and things don’t go well for me at all and it’s never a good thing!!! I get sad, mopey and defeated!!!! I can fall way too quickly into a downward spiral and getting out can be super tough!!!!
But when I PLAN times of solitude these are some of the sweetest times with Jesus I have!!!! They are planned out and within a set time frame. They are times with Jesus when I walk away having GAINED SO MUCH!!!!!! They strengthen me, gird me up, cement the ground I am standing on in Jesus, sharpen my vision on Him!!!!
OUR HEARTS KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!!!!!
Here is my bottom line for today . . . . . isolation is the WRONG DIRECTION FOR OUR HEARTS TO BE GOING!!!!!!!!!! This is never what God has for us!!!!!!!! When we start to withdraw from the world unplanned for long periods of time these is the risk that we are not going in the direction of the Light, the Son, and JOY!!!!!!!
So the question of the day is this . . . . . . What is God saying to your heart about ISOLATION and SOLITUDE?!?!?!?!?