ALONE: having no one else present; on one's own.
LONELY: sad because one has no friends or company; friendless, forsaken, inner emptiness
SOLITUDE: withdrawal for privacy and peace
A few days ago I was in Austin with grandchildren, then I was back home in Frisco with my family plus I attended church and several meetings, and today, I'm in Tulsa to be with my family here and for a conference. With all that “on the road again and busyness”, right now -- I don’t have time for being ALONE, LONELY or even finding SOLITUDE. But, that’s okay!!
Just a little “inside” information. Because of the 24/7 hours a day of living/working/playing together for most of our 44 years of marriage, I really never knew LONELINESS, or for that matter, being ALONE. But, seasons changed when my sweetheart graduated to heaven and I had the opportunity for being alone and lonely. I’m pleased to say “I chose neither.” I chose a sweet place of SOLITUDE. LONELINESS is inner emptiness and SOLITUDE is inner plenty especially when our inner plenty includes acknowledging our Plentiful Father is always with us. I said it before, I say it again – Emmanuel – GOD WITH US!
Now don’t get me wrong. I love hanging out with my friends, attending church, shopping, playing games, traveling, socializing, being a part of women’s groups, prayer groups and spending as much time with my kids and grandkids as possible. But, right here at the front side of 2018, I'm embracing any time I can for SOLITUDE. It’s a journey of choice -- from “It’s all about me and what I don’t have and what I need”, TO “It’s about personal maturity and communion with God Who assures me I am NEVER alone, that He has plans and a future for me and His plans for me far outweigh my plans for me.”
Jesus explained His SOLITUDE like this in Matthew 16:32 “The hour is coming when you will be scattered, each to his own home, and will leave me ALONE. Yet I am not ALONE for the Father is with me."
I understand SOLITUDE is the opposite of companionship and both have their places. I love spending time with my besties and my family. But I also understand the importance of “being still and knowing He is God.” Psalm 46:10. That is where my strength for today and hope for tomorrow comes from. I know "The Way" I need to go, "The Truth" I need to know, and "The Life" I live is in Him alone. (John 14:6).
Feeling lonely? Need love? Seek Him. You're not alone. God's arms are open wide and when you hug Him? No contest. He will always be hugging you way longer than you could ever hold Him. After all, He’s our “Good, Good Father” and He knows what’s best for us and He loves to embrace and tell us "I love you and you are mine!