getting ready: solitude
Reflection 6 of 10
But now even more the report about him went abroad, and great crowds gathered to hear him and to be healed of their infirmities. But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray. Luke 5:15-16 | ESV
And every day he was teaching in the temple, but at night he went out and lodged on the mount called Olivet.And early in the morning all the people came to him in the temple to hear him. Luke 21:37-28 | ESV
Solitude was a regular practice of Jesus.
Crowds would crowd and clamor, needs and needy people would always be at hand. And Jesus made a habit of slipping off and heading out into…
During what we know as Holy Week – the last week of Jesus’ life on earth – Jesus seems to have made it a daily routine to slip out of the city at night and retreat to a place of solitude on the Mount of Olives. In fact he seems to have become so predictable in this that Judas knew exactly where to lead the soldiers when they came out to arrest him: to the secluded Garden of Gethsemane.
Having spent last week with the five key characters of the Easter story with whom we are connecting this year and seen what they had to leave at the foot of cross with Christ, we now come to Easter week itself.
How do we prepare so we receive all that we can from the experience of this week?
Jesus’ practice that week gives us a starting place not just for being prepared this Easter season, but for being prepared for what we suspect will be any season of crisis and conflict.
For some of us such solitude may come easy – perhaps far too easy; with others it may be as foreign as speaking Swahili. But whether inclined or significantly disinclined, this week is an opportunity to break the norm and intentionally seek some enriching moments of solitude.
Find your Gethsemane.
Perhaps take a friend or two so you can experience solitude together. Such solitude is simply breaking the tyranny of the urgent and noisy and embracing the primacy of breathing and being.
Find your Gethsemane.
Perhaps take some Psalms with you as companions as well.
Does solitude come easily for you, or is it excruciating torture because you hate to be alone?
How can you stretch yourself in seeking some solitude this week?
Lord, lead me to my Gethsemane, to my quiet place this week. Show me how to slow down and breathe and be. Through Christ.