And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
So it was, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle and went out and stood in the entrance of the cave. Suddenly a voice came to him, and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”
~ 1 Kings 19:12 - 13
Some mornings I am moved to spend time alone. What I have discovered is that being alone for me is about finding time to be with God.
These are the times that I purposely step away from the phone, television, radio, and others as well. When I think of spending time with God, I am reminded of the times that Jesus "withdrew," from the disciples to go off and pray. During these times in scripture, we seem to have an understanding of who Jesus was as a person, but also, a reminder to us that in our relationship with God, sometimes we simply need to make ourselves completely available to God.
I love the story of the Elijah going out on the mountain to look for the Lord. God "passes by," and there is a great wind, earthquake, the rocks are broken all around him, and then a great fire. In all of these things he looks for the presence of God. But then, in the silence, he discovers the still, small voice of God speaking to him.
I spend a lot of hours each day being alone in my car as I drive from one hospice patient visit to the next. Some days, the traffic brings me to a crawl in the city. I have begun looking at these interruptions in the regular flow of my day as a reminder that sometimes we are to slow down, and to listen. It's in these moments that I find that I allow my mind to think about others, but also, ask God to speak to me.
Before you begin to envision a scene from the movie, "Oh God!" where George Burns suddenly appears in the car with John Denver (Yeah, I probably dated myself a little bit here), or God providing a sign of "Danger Ahead," as Morgan Freeman did with Jim Carey in "Bruce Almighty." No, it is more about taking the time to simply allow God to be part of the day. Even in our cars, or in the grocery line, the waiting area of a doctor's office, or while waiting on your daughter to get ready so that you can go to the store. We can take the time to invite God to be with us.
Our ability to find a way to be alone with God will, and does, become easier when it becomes a daily practice. What do you need to do? God is waiting.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2019
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.