Dreaded Isolation

Isolation by definition is  the act of keeping apart from others; the condition of being kept apart from others;  For us, it means being alone. And as human beings we were never meant to be alone (Genesis 2:18). We fill our days with tasks to avoid it.  Such as work, watching television, listening to music, and socialising. We do all this to avoid the quiet sound of alone. We don’t like it because being alone can create feelings of despair, depression, and anxiety.  But even though it isn’t fun or likable, being alone can help us. Sometimes it is necessary for us. In the Bible, there were many times Jesus went away from the crowds of people to pray. It was his alone time with God and he made sure he did it.  Jesus was even alone in the desert for forty days and nights to fast and pray. He took initiative to isolate himself. But sometimes, If God needs your undivided attention he may tell you to go somewhere alone against your will. Look at the story of Elijah.

In 1st Kings Chapter 17, God told Elijah to go and hide by the Kerith Brook.  He directed him to drink from the brook and explained that the he would be fed by the ravens.  During his time there, a drought hit and the brook dried up. So the Lord told him to go to the village of Zarephath where there would be a widow who would feed him.  Three years after the drought hit, the Lord told Elijah to go tell King Ahab that the Lord will send water soon.

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The Bible does not say how long Elijah was alone in hiding but he was alone for a while before the drought hit.  Then three years after that he went back to the King. He was in hiding for some years. But he obeyed the Lord and he was taken care of the whole time he was hiding.  God even gave him some company with the Widow. But can you imagine what his days would have consisted of when he was alone? He had to have had times of lonely and it was all directed by God.  

We see in this story that Elijah’s season of alone was requested by God.  God told him to go hide, drink from a brook, and be fed by the birds. I imagine that there were times that Elijah doubted what he heard from God.  But because he obeyed, God took care of all his needs. God may ask you to isolate yourself or he may put you in isolation. It can come in the form of a fight with friends, or family, or maybe moving to a new location.  A sure sign that you are on the right path is God will supply all your needs. In Elijah’s story, just when his loneliness was probably getting to him, God gave him the widow friend. And just when the water dried up, he told him to go to the village.   He will give you exactly what you need when you need it.

I’ll never forget the greatest season of loneliness in my life.  My little family and I had just moved away from our hometown. And so we were all alone in a new town.  During this time my husband and I also had a falling out from our family. It was hurtful betrayal to us and we were both angry about it yet could do nothing about it.    Even though we had eachother, we both felt left behind and not cared for. We felt lost and unsure about where we were. It was during those times, we leaned in closer to God and searched for his healing hand.  Our pain brought us closer to him. Then in the middle of our struggle, God showed himself yet again to us just like in the story of Elijah. God provided us with new friends who still are like family to us. He supplied us with what we needed to get through that tough time. It was a sign from him that we were exactly where we were supposed to be even in the midst of our loneliness.  We experienced him like never before and obtained such growth throughout it. He became our everything during that miserable, lonely time. And in the end, our loneliest time became our greatest growing season. We learned about both ourselves, and about God.

He stripped people from our lives to get us alone.  We leaned on him for everything. When God wants to be alone with you he will do so  in whatever way he wants. And we can trust that he will supply our every need. Just like he did in our story and in the story of Elijah.

 God loves you.  Even though it hurts, trust that big things are happening during times of isolation.  Isolating you allows God to mold you and help you grow. He helps you to focus on things he wants you to focus on.  And when everything is stripped from you, he can be there to restore it all for you. Throughout your times of isolation, lean closer to God and see what he helps you get out of it.  Pray harder and longer, read your Bible.  Seek his face, and you will find whatever it is you’re looking for. He will meet you right there. What could it be that God wants you to get out of your season of loneliness?  


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