Solitude

We all need it.  That time alone without interruptions.  Yet so often we have too many things fighting for our time and attention.  And when the unexpected shows up at our door, we realize how much we depend on those times of solitude.  We’ve all been there.  You know –  those days when everything came crashing down at once.  The days when you just wanted to run and scream and let everyone know that you really do not have that super hero cape hiding in the closet.

I still remember December of 1991.  I had just scheduled a doctor’s appointment for my very sick one-year old daughter when the phone rings.  My mom’s voice breaks through to inform me that my Mam-maw had just had an aneurism and was taken to the ER.  She might not make it.  At the doctor’s office, I learn that my daughter is very sick with the croup and is borderline of needing to be taken to the hospital.  That’s impossible!  I have a four hour drive to take to see my Mam-maw! I had not even had the chance to tell her I was once again expecting!  That was to be part of her Christmas present.

No drive home that night.  Instead, a recheck was scheduled for first thing the next morning with our pediatrician.  My husband and I were taking turns being up nursing and praying for our daughter.  In between my turns I was making a beeline to the bathroom.  Morning sickness had decided to visit early.  As our daughter is crying and I am losing what little I had in my stomach, my husband hears a great song come on the radio, “It’s the most wonderful time of the year……..”  I don’t thing Andy had gotten the memo that our house was not experiencing such a wonderful time!

Or what about the time you find out your husband’s job was just given to someone else without him knowing and now your family is without a job or insurance, and baby number three is on his way?  And you need four brand new tires for your car.

We all can list those times.  The news of a lay off.  Learning your 13 year old was just hit in the head by a brick and has a concussion while in Guatemala.  Watching a parent slowly drift away to eternity.  Hearing a spouse on the other end of the line barely able to breathe and you can’t seem to get to them fast enough.  Watching your child’s world fall apart and there is nothing you can do to fix it.

These are the times you learn where your inner strength really lies.  As one of the animated shows asked, what is your center when the things around you seem to be overcoming your very being?  For me, it is the quietness with my Father.  I depend on it.  My responses to the unexpected reflect it.  Being my mom’s caregiver was an honor.  But how could I have so much peace in the midst of watching her earthly body drift away?  It’s my center.

My center is my very being.  That being that knows that no matter what comes my way, my Father holds me.  Sometimes I lose sight of that center.  Sometimes I rush to judgement on others who hurt me.  Sometimes I scream into space that I am at the end of my rope and can not take another thing thrown my way.  But every time that life gets to that place, I find my center again when I quietly walk back into HIS center of peace.

He holds me.  He is my center.  Abba Father.  Creator.  God Almighty.  My Eternal Lover. And no matter what comes my way or how I respond, He still puts His arms around me in comfort and love.  He created me so He knows me like no one else.

He is my secret strength in this life.  Is He yours?  If not, I challenge you, find HIS center for your life.