I'm reading a book called, "The Essentials of Christian Living from The Life Model: Living from the heart Jesus Gave you." It's written by a whole list of people who are connected to a Ministry called, "Shepherd's House." I'm not sure I can yet explain much about the book, but one sentence caught my eye, " And while you are on that pathway (the pathway to maturity), try to avoid isolation. You cannot overcome life's obstacles alone. As your maturity progresses, you will be able to help others discover how to live from their hearts, too. That is a fulfilling experience. You can be incredibly proud of those you have helped in making progress with maturity, and that will give you increased confidence that your own journey is on its proper course. You will find that others are growing as your are growing." (italics mine)
Sometimes life can be isolating. I have health issues. I am reactive to perfume, cleaning products, paint, and traffic. I have bounced from one state to another for the last three years. My children are grown and gone (it's funny how much my children have defined who I connected with) Isolation is almost a given for me. How do you remain connected in the midst of such circumstances? As I ponder that my mind wanders to others more isolated than I am. (oops -- had to stop here and call my 85 year old friend and see if she is feeling isolated today) Sometimes isolation is not a choice. It is the season that you are in. But on the flip side I believe it is also some kind of silent enemy that needs to be fought and conquered. Sometimes we need to fight against our isolation, sometimes we need to fight against the isolation of others.
I'm thinking that isolation is a sign of the times too. In all my recent travels I have noticed that people now spend much more time on their ipods, computers and tablets and much less time talking to the guy sitting next to them. It's awkward to strike up a conversation with a stranger and much easier to simply tune them out.
Isolation doesn't always mean you are alone. You can be in a crowd and be just as isolated. The trick is to engage, to be relational, to make significant moments out of every moment.