We all having varying degrees of contact with the outside world. Some of us can hardly find a moment without someone in our personal space, putting demands on our energy and time. Others of us may feel forgotten and long for human interaction and companionship. Both situations can cause stress in our lives. But no matter where you find yourself on this spectrum, it’s important that you seek solitude with God.
Solitude is not merely being alone, but experiencing the presence of God by ourselves. It often involves intentionality on our part; for the default is that the world will fill in any gaps in our attention or time, either with external influence and demands or internal, existential crises.
In his message, “God’s Stress Remover,” Dr. Stanley says that if we practice solitude, our lives will be changed in the following ways. Solitude with God:
Makes our busy days more fruitful. If we begin each day with the Lord, setting our minds and hearts on Him and listening for His voice, He’ll guide us and make whatever we do more productive in service to Him.
Repairs damage. After a hard day, when we just can’t handle any more, a time of solitude with the Lord refuels us emotionally. All our troubles and anxieties are released, and we come away liberated and refreshed.
Equips us to face the tough days. Time alone with the Lord enables us to face the trials, heartaches, and burdens of difficult days with calm confidence and assurance of His presence with us.
Creates surprising moments. When we meet quietly with the Lord, He may unexpectedly answer our prayers in surprising ways and reveal even more than we asked.
Strips us of pride. In God’s presence we begin to recognize His holiness, perfection, and power, and as a result, come to understand how lowly we are in comparison.
Protects health. Stress affects our bodies and damages our health, but solitude with the Lord releases our anxiety so we don’t have to suffer its harmful effects.
Makes a difference in relationships. When we’ve released our stress to the Lord, our relationships with others improve.
Gives peace and joy. Times of solitude with God can still our hearts, quiet our spirits, and enable us to overcome, no matter what we’re facing in life.
Gives greater strength from the Lord. He enables us to handle each day’s challenges.
Produces greater trust in God. We rest in the knowledge that our heavenly Father will take care of us.
Deepens our relationship with the Lord. In those quiet times, we learn to know Him more intimately.
Do you have time during your day when you can shut out the world and simply focus on the goodness and blessings of God’s presence? Try turning off the TV or radio, putting your phone on silent, and finding a quiet place for a few minutes. It’ll feel weird at first, but as you cut out the distractions and turn your mind to God, you will begin to experience all the blessings Dr. Stanley mentioned—and maybe even more.
Dr. Stanley shares more about how solitude eases our anxieties in his message, “God’s Stress Remover.”