Loneliness and Solitude
There’s something about sitting up in a tree that makes you feel on top of the world. I loved to climb trees when I was younger. I would climb up, feel the wind through my hair, lookout over the view, and just feel completely alive. So when this sweet girl wants to climb, I oblige.
Being the youngest of 5, you’d think I always had company, but I was actually alone quite a bit. Older siblings always had something else to do, so I spent a lot of time in our big back yard by myself. We had a platform in a tree just like this one. It was my brothers’ attempt at a treehouse, but I think I’m the one who used it the most. Sometimes it was lonely being on my own, but I learned early on the difference between loneliness and solitude. The beautiful thing is that although the loneliness brought with it it’s own set of pain and wounds, in the solitude I learned to talk to God. Those moments sitting by myself in the trees taught me to question and seek and eventually, led me to find.
So I thank Him for allowing the loneliness because it led me to solitude, and I praise Him for the solitude because it led me to Him. There is a great wisdom that is the undercurrent of each of our lives, a thread that ties everything back together. When I think about all of that time alone, I do mourn for the lonely girl, but I also see very clearly now the good that God brought out of it. If you ask Him, He will show you where He was in your loneliness. You may not see it yet, but He was always there, bringing good out of what the enemy meant for evil.
“Even though you meant harm to me, God meant it for good.” (Genesis 50:20, NAB)