I am rarely a fan of being alone. I’m way too much of an extrovert for that. However, it’s Spring Break, and while most college students are away at the beach or in the mountains, I’m still at good ole Samford University.
I am in the middle of desolation.
But as I began reading through the books of Matthew and Mark this week, my mindset about desolation has slowly started to change. I used to hate desolation. It meant that I wasn’t pouring into somebody and somebody wasn’t pouring into me. “Outside of community” was my synonym for “desolation.”
But this isn’t what Scripture teaches.
When Jesus heard that John the Baptist had been killed, “he withdrew … to a desolate place by himself” (Matt 14:13). Solidarity is something Jesus found… by being by himself, to be in a place where He could just be alone and no one could reach him.
Jesus taught and fed both the 4,000 and the 5,000 in a desolate place. In desolate places, no one can interrupt Jesus. People were not being distracted by their families at home, by the selling and trading of wares, by messengers, or by any other means. Jesus was free to teach and perform in a way he was not able to when he was in a town or village.
Jesus went to a desolate place, the Garden, to pray. Only there could He truly talk to God in peace and quiet, with no interruption and no other voices trying to get into His head.
Desolation is not a curse but a blessing from God. It’s a place where we aren’t asked to go but a place we are commanded to go.
…but today I ask you if this idea of biblical desolation even exists.
In a world of cell phones, internet, TV, and radio, is there a place where we are able to be completely disconnected? Are we able to escape the constant noise of the world and just sit and be? How do we silence the constant influx of information and news that is streamed directly to us on our phones and other handheld devices?
Can we truly shut down technology so that we can just be still and know God?
Comment with your thoughts or tweet them @NicaMissionary …