Finding Comfort In Solitude
ETIW Weekly Newsletter: October 2nd 2023
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What Is Lost And Found (Issue 12)
This year began with a gradual yet sudden loss of many friendships I thought I would have for the rest of my life. It is not easy to let go of things, people, opportunities, hopes, dreams etc. (The list goes on and on). However, I do recognize the loss deepened my desire to cultivate a sense of peace in the midst of life’s uncertainties.
Truthfully, I have experienced many moments of loss and solitude in my life.
As I’m sure others, regardless of age, have as well. Many people I once knew and saw daily in different seasons of my life never followed me into future ones. For example, by the time I went to high school, there were many friendships I had held dear in elementary and middle that I never heard from again, and some with whom I have reconnected since.
Moving to America at such a young age, I often felt like a fish out of water. I didn’t realize it at the time but this made it hard for me to know how to appropriately express myself. I did not know how to forge deep connections even though I desired them.
It wasn’t until I began to explore healing that I realized the void I had was God sized and could not be filled by others.
This doesn’t mean I do not see the value in human connections. But rather, it means I realized I had been unintentionally searching for, perpetuating, and facilitating either co-dependent connections, or push & pull ones. I was afraid of friendships that felt calm. I was afraid to be myself in front of people my soul wanted to forge a balanced relationship with.
This is where the value in solitude comes in.
My surrender to solitude helped me to see my worth. It helped me cultivate lifestyle habits that facilitated acts of self-love. In doing so, I became better at identifying dynamics in my life that were unbalanced. Such as my desires and willingness to show up for someone who barely gave my existence a second thought. I also realized their unwillingness or inability to do so was not something I needed to be resentful about. I too have played that role in the lives of others.
My spiritual journey was revamped by thought work and “self-help”.
However, when I began to find God again, I decided to take my self-worth realization into His presence. My moments of solitude proved to be moments of deeper connection with God’s spirit. These moments helped me to eventually learn to feel no resentment about things and situations that don’t go my way.
When I asked God “Why are these people, situations etc. unkind/indifferent to me even though I try to connect with them? And why am I sometimes emotionally distant from certain people or opportunities that seem to seek me out?
The way I understood this verse is that God will open the hearts of the right people to allow them to either stay or depart from our lives.
This is why when something is overly forced it feels uncomfortably difficult. The right relationships in our lives feel effortless in comparison. Even when things are hard, we are willing to fix it. Willing to let go of resentment and pride, to make room for humble love. Such a heart posture is like rivers of water flowing out of our hearts.
I still do my best to interact with others from a place of love. However, I no longer force myself to hold on to relationships that feel barren. Even if I decide to reach out because I feel called to, I allow the other to do whatever they feel called to do. I trust God will continue to guide my life and my heart as long as I am willing. I trust whoever is meant to be in it will stay, or return when the time is right. Until then, I will continue to find comfort in solitude and rest in God’s silence. I wish to live my life with the peace of His holy spirit. A peace that is beyond understanding. (Philipians 4:7)