Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Get Alone, Together with God (PrayerLife)

Jerusalem, with the Mount of Olives in the background

Linda and I have had a "date" together every Friday, every week, for 40+ years. We look forward to these Friday nights, as we get alone, together. Just us. This is one way we keep the marital fire burning.

God and I get together, alone, periodically, every week. "It's just You and me here now, only You and me here now" (David Crowder). This is a main way I tend the fire within.

Is solitude with god important? Jesus thought so. While on earth Jesus got alone with the Father, "as was his custom." One of Jesus's regular alone-places with the Father was the Mount of Olives. We read in Luke 23: 39 Then, accompanied by the disciples, Jesus left the upstairs room and went as usual to the Mount of Olives. 40 There he told them, “Pray that you will not give in to temptation.” 41 He walked away, about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed...

Solitude with God is alone-time with God, "just me and God" time. If Jesus found this necessary, who are we not to?

Henri Nouwen writes:

"Solitude begins with a time and place for God, and God alone. If we really believe not only that God exists but also that God is actively present in our lives - healing, teaching, and guiding - we need to set aside a time and space to give God our undivided attention. Jesus says, "Go to your private room and, when you have shut the door, pray to your Father who is in that secret place" (Matt. 6:6)." (Seeds of Hope: A Henri Nouwen Reader, edited by Robert Durback, 63)