“All Thy works with joy surround Thee, earth and heaven reflect Thy rays.”
It is almost springtime and summer is coming, when God faithfully brings renewed expressions of new life in every thing we see. Everything living thing receives from His gracious involvement exactly what was waited for, and then expresses praise to the Lord. The trees, corn, and beans of the field show colors. The birds, squirrels, and rabbits make their sounds. Everything is shot through with glory. Creation relinquishes control to the One whose presence is the bedrock of its being. How shall we join in the chorus of praise?
I met an unhappy man, who could not sit quietly in his living room—a room with a view. He could not sit in a park without being diverted by a gnawing sense that he was wasting his time, so he constantly turned to diversion to keep himself from solitude. Hence it was, for him, that the pleasure and joy of solitude was a thing incomprehensible. Every true Christian is strengthened, not weakened, by solitude with God.
For those who do not understand our evil age and desperate situation, the spiritual discipline of solitude may look strange or too simplistic. To those who discover rest for their souls by practicing of solitude with a Bible and journal, however, these true believers find it absolutely necessary.
Solitude, waiting and trusting for God’s grace to transform and shape us into those created for His praise, can produce the springtime of spiritual transformation. Solitude is the springtime of transformation in which our souls are watered with God’s Word and Spirit. It is where we feel safe to no longer form layers of bark around our souls for protection against the world’s elements and diversions. It is the place of great gospel encounter, where a new sense of the light and warmth of the Son rises upon us with healing power. There in the warm and safe presence of God, Jesus awakens new life to a dormant saint after a long, wintery season.
Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love;
Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, opening to the Son of above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; Drive the dark of doubt away;
Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day!