Box of blue hyacinths - When You Give Yourself The Gift Of Solitude - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

“We live, in fact, in a world starved for solitude, silence, and private: and therefore starved for meditation and true friendship.” –C.S. Lewis,  The Weight of Glory

Recently I have been struggling with getting a decent night’s sleep.

Usually, I get up early, make breakfast, make the bed,  and see Tim off to work. After getting just a few hours of sleep, he encouraged me to stay in bed and attempt to get a little more shut-eye.  Fortunately, I don’t usually have a firm early work schedule or appointments.

Somedays I managed to sleep… other days I just lay there in the quiet.  Being sleep deprived is not a fun thing… but there has been a gift in all of this.  You see, even though I am often by myself and I do have a daily devotional and prayer time, I usually don’t spend much time in solitude.

 

Chest with pot of hyacinths and lamp - step away for a half an hour and find a place of solitude - an inspirational devotional - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

A time of solitude is one where there is no agenda.  It takes time to enter into solitude… it’s not like a 20-minute catnap.

There in the quiet something happened.  Inspiration came… ideas came… hope infused me… as did a sense of more.

It was as if God were breathing life into me during those moments in time.

 

Pot of blooming blue hyacinth bulbs - An inspirational devotional on the gift of solitude - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

When I lived in NY and needed inspiration and answers, I used to lie down on my sofa in the family room, with a pen and paper nearby.  Alone in the quiet, it was a holy time.  It was also a time where much was accomplished on that sofa in the prone position.

And then we moved… one, two three, four and now our fifth residence since then.

The habit wasn’t forgotten… the value of it always hung in the recesses of my memory.  Sometimes I tried to recreate it at the beach, but it wasn’t the same.

This time… lying in bed… I finally experienced the solitude I’d been missing.

Funny thing, until I experienced it again, I had no idea just how much I’d missed it.

 

Home decor vignette with blue hyacinths - An inspirational devotional on the gift of solitude - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

As we participate in the season of Lent there are various voices suggesting that we do this, or give up that.

It’s all good.

In fact, I hope that Lent doesn’t go by and you look back in regret for what you could have done.

What I’d like to do today, is encourage you to do nothing.  To simply sit or lie down in solitude.  To let go of your agenda and just be quiet.

Be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Don’t pull out your Bible, don’t talk to God, just be… quiet.

Falling asleep is not the goal… but if you do… no doubt you needed that deeper rest.

 

Close up of blue hyacinth - Be inspired to receive the gift of solitude - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

It’s during these times of quiet solitude that you can slip into the presence of the Lord.

It’s in these quiet times that you might “hear” him speak to you.

When you’re finished with your time of solitude, sit with your pen and paper and write.  What to write?  You’ll know… sooner than later.

And then… if you haven’t earlier in your day… read a few verses from your Bible and think about them as you ease into the rest of your day.

In the morning he went to a place where he could be alone. The crowds searched for him. When they came to him, they tried to keep him from leaving. —Luke 4:42

Jesus needed to be alone in order to minister to all the people he would be in contact with during the day.  Without this time, I’m sure he would be depleted.

When you feel depleted… step away for a half an hour and find a place of solitude and allow your heavenly father to minister to you in the quiet.

Don’t be surprised if you step back into your day with a sense of peace and clarity.

 

JoyDay! - When You Give Yourself The Gift Of Solitude DEVOTIONAL - AnExtraordinaryDay.net

 

It’s Joy Day!

 

Please join me in thinking back over the past week and counting seven things for which you are thankful.

This simple exercise of counting and giving thanks together in this space resets our compasses and put our eyes back on the Lord. And ultimately fills our hearts with JOY!

I’ll start…

I’m grateful God…

  1. that you meet me in the quiet.
  2. for the glorious sunsets this week.  
  3. for using my new chiro to bring much-needed healing.
  4. for being able to watch some of the Olympics.
  5. for simple times with Tim… enjoying a sandwich and a drive by the lake to see the icebergs.
  6. that you are constant, true, and faithful.  That we can trust you.
  7. for your love that NEVER fails.

Now it’s your turn!

Scroll down to the “Share your Extraordinary Thoughts” box below and tap in your ‘seven.’

When you do, you’ll find the corners of your mouth turn up and the joy meter in your spirit rise.

Thank you for stopping by and leaving your sweet thoughts.May your week overflow with unimaginable Joy! Signature - AnExtraordinaryDay.netReceive FREE inspiration like this in your inbox!
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Comments

  1. Diane,its hard for me to say i want solitude. I have children but I’m alone alot.I do love the quiet time first thing in the morning but i hate being alone.Since i was 14 i had James and then at 15 we added a child so I’ve never been as alone as i am now.I am thankful that every scripture i turn to is one of God saying He’s with me,that my grandson ask his girlfriend to marry him,that my grandson is gonna be the chaplain for the fire department in our city,for each night I’m not sick,for 60 degree temps today,for everytime He helps me hold on when anxiety hits me,that the cross says I’M ENOUGH!!

    • The quiet and time of solitude with God is so special… but being alone…especially a lot as you have been since James has gone is understandably difficult. I have a dear friend in your position and she stays very busy because she doesn’t like the loneliness, either. Praying for you right now… that you will sense God’s continual presence and find unexpected contentment in your aloneness, Betty. BIG BIG HUGS!

  2. I enjoyed your sweet smelling hyacinths. They bloomed beautifully.
    Solitude is a bit different than being alone. As you said. It’s taking time to not meet an agenda. I think of it as the ,”Be still and know that I am God.” How often do I actually do that? I’m not sure. It’s a purposeful act. Thank you for this reminder.
    Seven blessings.
    1. Walking. I can walk. Not like others but I can. And what a blessing.
    2. Sunshine and a sprinkle of rain!
    3. I got to see the ocean! It’s a pretty site.
    4. Plotting and planning a new living room color scheme. I’ve been slowly gathering items and I hope to get help to put it up. It shall be fun to totally change the look of a room by taking down curtains.
    5. I was able to visit with other Christians. This is a big blessing as I’m usually housebound. So good to hear how the Lord takes care of His own.
    6. I’ve seen many camellias blooming and heard birds singing. This brings joy.
    7. A new baby I know seems to be doing well after surgery. A blessing.

    • Thank you, Gwen! Yes, they bloomed slowly (what a blessing), easily over a 2 week period and now they are just beginning to finish up, nearly a month later. Best ever!! Yesterday I got a little pot of February Gold Daffodils. They will be fun.
      You finally got to the ocean!!! Oh, how restorative for you. And working on a little makeover for your living room! That is FANTASTIC! I’m so happy for you.
      We don’t have camellias here that I remember, are they fragrant? I’m beginning to hear the beginning of birdsong again. The winter is so quiet… absent of those sweet songs. The cardinals are now calling their territory and the sparrows are back to chirping (but I’m not a fan of their chirping… it wears on me like dripping water from a faucet). The winter birds which are usually quiet are beginning to sing a bit too. We have a good month to go… but I’m welcoming spring with open arms for sure!!
      Praying your week is filled with God’s overwhelming JOY!

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