“Graffiti With Meaning!” Matthew 14: 22-24 Key verse(s): 23: “After he had dismissed the, he went up on a mountainside by himself to prayer. When evening came, he was there alone . . .”
“Isolation is not all that bad . . . it just depends on who you spend it with.” At first glance this seemingly contradictory phrase sounds a bit trite. But, when you examine it closely, it may contain more truth in just fifteen words than many volumes on the psychology of isolation can ever reveal. The author is unknown but I do know that it was a man and that he probably enjoyed camping and had spent a lot of time, perhaps alone, around the old campfire. The reason is, I discovered this wisdom some years ago scrawled in pencil on a the walls of a men’s vault toilet in a national forest camp grounds. I was so taken by it, that I went back later to copy it down in a notebook.
Most such “lavatory treasures” are there for purposes other than wisdom. However, this one struck me differently. I smiled as I read and reread it. Finally, I became intrigued. I began to search for the meaning that lay beneath the surface. Was the author of this graffiti glorifying self? Was he so possessed with his own image and being that he preferred his own company to that of anyone else? It gave me pause to think. I began to feel that the message had a deeper meaning, one that I was supposed to discover; one that I was supposed to understand and apply to my own life.
Of all the places to pray I had never imagined a vault toilet to qualify as one. But, when you think of it, it does provide the quiet and solitude that our Savior so often searched for when He needed to spend time alone with His Father in prayer. I guess after all that not all isolation produces paranoia, suicidal thoughts or aggressiveness. Not when it is time spent in the company of the Holy Spirit. It really just depends on who you are sharing your time of isolation with!
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