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Richard Foster – Solitude

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1 Richard Foster – Solitude
The world calls us from loneliness to noise and crowds. Jesus calls us from loneliness (inner emptiness) to solitude (inner fulfilment) Let him who cannot be alone beware of community, lest he plunge into the void of words and feelings. Let him who is not in community beware of being alone, lest he perish in the abyss of vanity, self-infatuation and despair. (Bonheoffer) Solitude is the silence in which a heart listens to God: To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools (Ecclesiastes 5:1). May our words be few and full: A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a setting of silver (Proverbs 25:11) Take advantage of, and seek out, little solitudes, quiet places and times of quiet We are welcome to come and listen to God’s speech in his wondrous, terrible, gentle, loving, all-embracing silence.

2 Meeting with God in Solitude
Experience of David (Psalm 63) Be still for the presence of the Lord Experience of Elijah (1 Kings 19) Dear Lord and Father Experience of Jesus (Luke 5) Silence Experience of Breaking bread Such Love Experience of Daily Living Be Thou my vision

3 Be Still Psalm 63 1O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. 2I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. 3Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. 4I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands. 5My soul will be satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you. 6On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. 7Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. 8My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me. 9They who seek my life will be destroyed; they will go down to the depths of the earth. 10They will be given over to the sword and become food for jackals. 11But the king will rejoice in God; all who swear by God's name will praise him, while the mouths of liars will be silenced.

4 Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD,
but the LORD was not in the wind.

5 After the wind there was an earthquake,
but the LORD was not in the earthquake.

6 After the earthquake came a fire,
but the LORD was not in the fire.

7 And after the fire came a gentle whisper.
When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, "What are you doing here, Elijah?" Dear Lord and Father

8 Meeting God in solitude
Luke 5: Solitude 12While Jesus was in one of the towns, a man came along who was covered with leprosy. When he saw Jesus, he fell with his face to the ground and begged him, "Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean." 13Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. "I am willing," he said. "Be clean!“ And immediately the leprosy left him. 14Then Jesus ordered him, "Don't tell anyone, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer the sacrifices that Moses commanded for your cleansing, as a testimony to them." 15Yet the news about him spread all the more, so that crowds of people came to hear him and to be healed of their sicknesses. 16But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed. Meeting God in solitude

9 Confession Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world Have mercy upon us Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world Grant us peace Such Love – Would those who are serving come to the table

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