Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray. Later Simon and the others went out to find him. When they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you.”
But Jesus replied, “We must go on to other towns as well, and I will preach to them, too. That is why I came.” So he traveled throughout the region of Galilee, preaching in the synagogues and casting out demons.
Solitude -- what a treasure. I frequently seek solitude, and as a wife and mother of three I struggle to obtain it. If I get up early, I am questioned, and joined. If I stay up late, I am questioned, and joined. Solitude and isolation makes others uncomfortable.
“Everyone is looking for you.”
It irritates me when I hear that, as if I am not where I am supposed to be. In my world, someone is frequently looking for me I never seem to be in the place where I am being sought. The one place that I know I should be, that I am safe, is before the Father, in solitude. Everything else is a toss-up.
And yet solitude is encumbered. It is not understood -- it is considered weird and unhealthy. In the church assembly, we are frequently reminded that we live in community. And we do live in community, but even in community we need some time alone. Sometimes solitude is what is most needed. Yet when we seek it we are ridiculed, because it is somehow threatening. I think it is most threatening to the enemy, because he knows what we will find there.
I have seen the Father in the sanctuary, but I have walked with Him and heard His voice in solitude. I have gazed upon Him in the worship assembly, but I have touched and talked with, and been held by Him in private. He knows me best in solitude, because that is where I am safest. I know Him best when I seek Him in solitude, because that is where I am safest.