Sunday, October 20, 2013

Our Need for Solitude

Developments in new technologies occur more and more rapidly each day.  New devices and advancements in the area of communications are astounding. There are many pluses to this, such as faster responses to emergencies, upgrades to security, etc. There is also a downside, namely less time for solitude.

A couple of decades ago, when you left work, you did leave it behind. You could be called at home, but there was always the choice to not answer the phone. Now, you could be beholden to the company 24/7. The boss can get you on your cell phone with its Bluetooth hook up to your car. There's also the tablet, notebook and laptop. Greater expectations and pressure often accompany the job.

Then, there is the time consumed by social networking and gaming. One can feel obligated to respond to comments or inquiries received. Addiction is a problem; one becomes tethered to your smart phone and tablet.

We, however, need our own time, time to be with family. We also need time to be alone. Without this time, how can we know ourselves and develop healthily? Besides self-knowledge, constant activity keeps us from knowing God and having a relationship with Him. It's like denying not only God but also ourselves.

Certainly, time for quiet prayer is a must. This brings us peace. Others, whether it's our boss or friends, should be respectful of our need for solitude. Some may be afraid of this time alone, afraid of what they may find out about themselves. But, there's no need to fear. If there is anything disturbing in self revelation, there is then the opportunity to fix it. A good examination of conscience done regularly will get us to make good confessions. The benefit to the sacrament of Reconciliation is God's absolution and his strength to live healthily in his grace.

Our quiet time with God also helps us increasingly to know his love and care. May we hopefully reserve for ourselves some solitude each day and use some of it to be with our Father.

Father Stanley

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