Friday, March 13, 2015

Becoming Like God...In His Serenity (3 of 3)

In the previous post, I provided 9 biblical reasons to engage in the Disciplines of Silence and Solitude. In this post, I will provide some concluding thoughts, and the options for next steps.

While many benefits may be gained by engaging in Silence and Solitude (including enhancing other Spiritual Disciplines), the main benefit is spending time alone with God. Whenever you want to develop an intimate relationship with someone, you need to find time to be alone. Of course, the same is true of our relationship with God.

Our letter for our JOURNEY this week is R – Revere. Psalm 46.10 says, “Be still and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” During the busyness of our lives, we can know God is there. During this series, we have mentioned that what we do can be an expression of worship. But, just like fasting often enhances our prayers, being alone in silence, before God, often enhances our knowing of God. Those moments of intimacy with God can truly help us know Him, and exalt Him, as the verse says.

So what is our next step? Before answering that question, a few questions each of us needs to ask ourselves? Well, what is noise (to you)? Is it a necessity? Or is it a problem? If it is a necessity – why? If it is a problem, do you use times of silence as a time of reflection on the Lord? Too many people don't take to reflect on much of anything, and therefore like me, on the lake, miss everything. Perhaps you have sensed God speaking to you about becoming His child, or taking a new step in your faith, and have just turned the thought away or never took the time to reflect. Why not take that time now?

For those who have already committed to follow Jesus, let me tweak our question for this series to make it about spending time in silence and alone with God:

If your growth in godliness were measured by your time alone with God, what would be the result?

So what's the next step in Becoming Like God? Listen – to God. And in order to listen, we have to make ourselves be quiet.

Again, this series is entitled Becoming Like God. We have reviewed several examples from Jesus' life that showed His being in seclusion spending time with the Father. Again, if it was important for Him, how much more is it for us? And beside the examples of Jesus, plenty of other biblical examples were shared this week showing that God thinks this is serious enough business to provide thoughts and examples for being silent and alone with Him.

So, specifically, what can you do as it relates to Silence and Solitude? Well, we return to our 4L's – Learn, Live, Love, and Lead – to provide potential next steps for each of us. Again, consider where you are related to fasting RIGHT NOW. And let the Spirit lead you to what you might next do.

LEARN: Consider where in your schedule you can make time to be silent before God, to spend time with God – alone.

LIVE: Schedule time each week (ideally, daily) to spend alone with God in silence. Even short times can be helpful.

LOVE: Take time for an extended break occasionally. Set aside a few days to read, study, pray, fast, etc.

LEAD: Encourage others by your testimony.

*This series of posts is adapted from Donald Whitney's book, Christian Disciplines for the Christian Life.

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