Sunday, November 25, 2018

Join Me in an Advent of Solitude

"One of the new challenges of our generation is the impact of technology on spirituality. This warrants serious consideration. If we are not careful, technology has a way of compromising our ability to present to ourselves, to God and to each other--all of which are fundamental elements of spiritual life...Exhaustion sets in when we are too accessible too much of the time.

A soul-numbing sadness comes when we realize that a certain quality of life and quality of presence is slipping away as a result of too much "convenience"."

-Sacred Rhythms: Arranging Our Lives for Spiritual Transformation, by Ruth Haley Barton


The author just described the underlying reaction I feel after a bout of losing myself behind a screen:

Soul-numbing sadness.

I can hardly go an hour without reaching for my phone, just to check in--no matter what I am doing-- writing a novel, playing with my kids, praying, reading a devotional. Everything I do, has room for a screen check.

I've trained myself to be connected ALL.THE.TIME. But, when it comes to connecting with God, I've squeezed that time to connect into the slivers of seconds between life and screen checks. Hardly any time at all.

Something deep inside me knows this is not how I am suppose to live the moments of this life. Deep down inside me, I know that I've been sabotaged, and I've allowed it to happen.

So this Advent season, I am going to be more mindful of SOLITUDE, rather than screen time. I am going to use the extra moments, or the actual moments, to tap into the quiet, to dip my attention into the present, and to find a new rhythm for my living--I hope to be transforming to spiritual wakefulness on a consistent basis.

I am dedicating this next season as an ADVENT OF SOLITUDE.

Does this sound like something you'd like to do? Does this resonate with your heart at all? I've spoken with many friends who feel the same longing, who have actually taken time apart from social media because of the noise, and the need for quiet. Does this interest you, too?

Check out the invitation below:


Join me in an ADVENT of SOLITUDE.

First things first.

WHAT IS ADVENT?  The period beginning four Sundays before Christmas and observed by some Christians as a season of prayer and fasting (Merriam-Webster Dictionary)

WHAT IS SOLITUDE? The quality or state of being alone (Merriam-Webster Dictionary) OR according to Ruth Haley Barton, "An opportunity to interrupt this cycle {constant noise of our society} by turning off the noise and stimulation of our lives so that we can hear our loneliness and our longing calling us deeper into the only relationship that can satisfy our longing."

The only relationship that I've found to satisfy my longing, has been through Christ. He is the wholeness of life, the one who has given me a hope and a Way to live into each next step. I've lost my connection with Him, to be quite honest. And so, I am going to offer Him this next season of Advent where we focus on His birth, to bear a new rhythm that connects me to Him.

An ADVENT of SOLITUDE  is  a season of FASTING from social media connection, and instead, connecting to God in   SOLITUDE,   PRAYING,  AND   BEING   PRESENT, with the hope of transforming  daily life into a rhythm that syncs with God (more than WiFi). ;)     


A SEASON: For the weeks of Advent, I'll disconnect from social media for a certain amount of time, and carve in time for Solitude. I am choosing to disconnect all Advent long, except for the Monday morning check-ins. If you choose to join in this Advent of Solitude, do what you feel is best for you (although, I strongly recommend disconnecting for a good long while. It truly is good for the soul. :) )

DAILY: Each morning, I'll spend some quiet in prayer--just God and me. I am going to buy an actual alarm clock and keep my phone away from my bedside. I hope to buy a journal as well. It has been a few years since I journaled my prayers. It's a wonderful way to stay focused on what my heart wants to say.

WEEKLY: Each week, I will carve out an extended amount of time to just spend time in Solitude. God and me only. Praying, but not reading. Sitting and listening. Breathing. Allowing God to speak, to move, to enjoy my undivided attention. (I will probably do this on Saturday morning for an hour or two while the family is asleep.)

CHECK-INS: Each Monday morning, I will get on to social media (for me, it will be just this day only), and check in on my Facebook Page ( If you choose to join in the Advent of Solitude, you don't have to share what is between you and God at these check-ins, just stop by and receive some encouragement, and let us know that you are spending your Advent focusing on Solitude.


I am going to do this to re-prioritize my moments. To become more present for my family, and more attuned to my relationship with God. I want to start a new rhythm this Advent, so I can step into 2019 without that "soul-numbing sadness". I want to transform my days into being and not just doing. I want to meet God again.

If you choose to join in the ADVENT of SOLITUDE, please join me on December 2nd, the first day of Advent. Stop by my author page ( for pre-check-in.

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