July 23, 2021

Solitude

My eyes are awake before each watch of the night, that I may meditate on your promise.
Psalm 119:148
We live in a very extroverted world, and the church encourages this orientation toward the world. We would rather speak than listen. We glory more in quantity than quality. We would rather wade through the shallow rather than plumb the depths.

There are many times in the Bible when extroversion seems to be the way of things. After all, it is easier to make God's love known by shouting about it among the multitudes, than by keeping to one's self. 

And yet the Bible is just as adamant about quiet time, waiting time, alone time. The same Mary who proclaimed the wonders of God's grace in Luke 1 quietly ponders its meaning in Luke 2. And Jesus seeks alone time with God or with just a couple of his friends in the midst of the hustle and bustle of his ministry.  

For all of us, then, it's important to remember that without time to ponder, growth is unlikely. And prayer is not a performance art: True communication with God takes place when we're alone and tucked away from a world that prefers style to substance.

But Mary treasured all these words and pondered them in her heart.
 Luke 2:19
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
O God, make us children of quietness and heirs of peace.
 Clement of Rome (1st century)
✙ 
After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.

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