I had never given thought to the idea of searching out solitude. Things were going great. I was a Grammy Award-winning music executive with a wife and three beautiful kids. I had so many amazing friends and an exciting community. Solitude—why would I need that? After all, we weren’t built for solitude: “It is not good for the man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). We go through life better in community.
However, there is power to be had, wisdom to be found, and intimacy to be discovered when we deliberately step aside from community and carve out time to go solo.
Jesus understood this. He always traveled in community, but when he needed to recharge, he left the pack and went solo. In the desert, on the other side of Galilee, in the garden of Gethsemane, and in many other examples, Jesus sought out solitude. There is a depth of understanding that cannot be gained in the company of others. For me, going solo transformed my life.
My wife walking out—leaving me to be a single parent of three young girls—was the best thing to happen to me. I was alone. Really alone.
I wouldn’t wish this situation on anyone, but this is precisely what it took to get my attention—to help me see how being alone, with the bottom dropped out, was the pathway to true peace and a strength I hadn’t known before. Over the next 8 1/2 years of being a single parent, I discovered the gift and power of solitude. In fact, I came to crave it. But it didn’t start easy.
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