By Carol Round, Special to ASSIST News Service
CLAREMORE, OK (ANS – August 9, 2015) –“But Jesus would often go to some place where he could be alone and pray”—Luke 5:16 (CEV).
When I arrived at a neighbor’s house recently, she was on hold with a company, trying to get help with a refrigerator problem. Hanging up after a bit, she asked me to take a look at the temperature gauge in the freezer section. Since her refrigerator is a newer model, the gauge is digital. I tried my best to figure it out but was unable to help.
Concerned about the frozen foods thawing out, my friend redialed the company’s number. As her phone was on speaker, I could hear the “mechanical” voice repeat a list of options. One of the final choices was to call a different number. My friend had to replay the final message three times before we got the correct number written down. Eventually, she made contact with a live person who was able to solve the problem with her freezer. While the solution was simple, the process she went through to get there was complicated.
Our lives have become more complicated in the 21st century. While technology has, in some instances, made things easier, in other ways it has contributed to modern society’s stress levels. With cell phones, computers and 24/7 cable television, we are kept in a perpetual state of “on” with information overload. Constant stress can lead to severe health issues, including physical, mental, emotional and behavioral problems. What if we learned to deal with stress in a biblical way?
Instead of turning to unhealthy habits like overeating and substance abuse, including alcohol and drugs, what if we chose the path Jesus took when He needed to escape the pressures of His ministry? Seeking God in solitude was Jesus’ habit when the going got rough.
Solitude is a time for being alone with God in complete silence. It means doing nothing, not even reading your Bible. Solitude and silence offers an opportunity to focus on your intimacy with Jesus by getting away from all distractions, including daily responsibilities, people and especially technology. The purpose of solitude is to privately commune with God — to simply be with your Abba Father.
Atlanta pastor Charles Stanley suggests going to the darkest place in your house, even a closet, to get rid of all distractions. “God deserves your undivided attention,” Stanley says.
How does solitude help? Stanley offers these benefits of being alone with God:
* Makes our days more fruitful.
* Repairs the damage after a stressful day and refuels us emotionally.* Equips us to face tough times.* Sometimes creates surprising moments when He unexpectedly answers our prayers.* Strips us of pride; in His presence, we recognize His holiness.* Protects our health; spending time with Him releases anxiety.* Gives us a sense of joy, peace and confidence.* Gives us a greater strength to handle challenges.* Produces greater trust in God* Develops a deeper relationship with Him.
Do you want more peace in your life? Solitude with our Heavenly Father is the best antidote to stress.
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