Posted by: alexhimaya | August 7, 2008

An Appeal for Solitude

Today I want to post an email I got from a friend Lonnie Lathom.  You can subscribe by email to Lonnie’s weekly devotions called “walking papers” at

An Appeal for Solitude

 How did Jesus dismiss the crowds? (Matt 14:22)
I hardly see him lifting both hands in ceremonial splendor, chatting some nihilistic blessing, or even some currently acceptable traditional rabbinic blessing, descending down into the crowd, exiting to the front and shaking the hands of those both important and those not. 
How did he dismiss the crowds?  Remember estimates were about 20,000 folks were still standing around there who had already become addicted to his miracles.  He had a nice reputation:  heal the sick; feed the poor.  Remember?  Taking care of their physical health and keeping them burping full was a better social system than any one offered then or now.
Did some one just yell out, “Jesus has left the room?”   With that announcement everyone obediently left.  Or maybe in the cartoon tradition of Porky Pig, Porky stuttered, “That’s– that’s–that’s all folks.” And with the wave of his hand everyone obediently left.
No wait.  Don’t tell me!  Jesus adopted Tracy Ullman’s closing and walked out and waved them away with “Go home!  Go Home!  Just go home!”  And with a smirky smile, he turned his back and exited stage right to the mountains alone.
You want to talk about another unclaimed, non identified miracle of scriptures?  Here it is.  Instead of beating to death the old horse of Peter walking on the water, having stepped out in faith only to sink in despair, let’s talk about how Jesus managed to escape the crowds to be alone in prayer with the Father.
For in a world filled with senseless chatter, cacophonous noise, ritualistic clamor often mistaken as worship, one of the greatest miracles of all is to find time away from the demanding few of the crowd to be alone with the Father.  To flea the din for the sanctuary of solitude is a miracle in deed.
Embracing meditation, sitting alone with God and our thoughts, ruminating on scripture are items most stolen by the demanding crowd. 
Dear Jesus, please teach us how to dismiss the crowds, the necessary and unnecessary ministry, and the selfishness that often drives too many of us who seek more for the praise of the crowds than your praise.  Establish within us the miracle of priority, the joy of our choice of you over all others and everything else. 
You did not leave the people because you had grown weary of them.  Just the opposite is true.  You loved them so much that in order to really bless them, you had to be alone with your Father.  Teach us to revel in the joy of being alone with Abba Father.   Then all  other miracles will have appropriate purpose and meaning. Amen


  1. I can’t imagine a more appropriate devotional for today. Thank you. I needed to hear this today. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: