Names of friends surfaced in our household over the last few days. Our family seized the opportunity life thrust us into recently as we adopted new practices of sharing meals together outside on the porch, watching favorite movies, working on projects together, exercising together, walking the dog together. These engagements opened space in our minds for conversations about folks in our lives who are special for many reasons. This unique frame of our lives sparks moments of nostalgia and longing for those we miss seeing and talking with, even when we may not have realized we missed the same people long before the rules of social distancing became the new normal.
Among the friends who came to mind, some are with family and some are alone. Being alone comes in many forms, as we all know. Some are alone in a crowded room. Others are alone by choice. Still others are alone by life's pattern of giving and taking away. The ones alone because of life's pattern come to mind more often during these days as we talk about the need to connect with those around us and the importance of getting to know the family in the walls of our homes. For many the stay at home orders quickly become a solitary confinement filled with empty days and meaningless racket from a square talking box in the center of our living spaces.
This morning during my time alone with the Lord, the word "solo" came to mind. Memories of my daughter singing rushed back with tremendous enthusiasm, bringing a smile to my face and to my spirit. The innocence and beauty of her voice resonated in my being for a time as the Lord reminded me of the blessings He so graciously gives as well as the lessons He so eagerly teaches. Caroline enjoys sitting at the piano to play and sing songs of worship to God. As she finds the tune with her fingers, her heart fills the room with melody. She could sing for hours in her world with the Lord and the piano or her ukulele. The accompaniment enhances and strengthens what is already a brilliant display of God's grace and mercy in her life.
I wonder if those who are living solo during this time will find their accompaniment. Volunteering at a food bank or counseling center, reading in a local school, quilting with friends, serving foster families accompanied many lives prior to the last few weeks and even the last few days. Listen carefully to notice the quiet that the lack of instrumentation brings. The soloist still sings, but the singing has become a capella. Where will the voice find a chorus to lift her? Where will the music find a chariot to carry him? What accompaniment will surface? Will the soloist become more comfortable alone?
In Psalm 63, David wrote about his time in the wilderness. He painted a verbal portrait of longing and seeking. His thirsty soul praised God based on the Lord's steadfast love. He sang out of the abundance of his soul from time spent with God, and he celebrated in praise from beneath the shadow of God's wing. From our knowledge of David, we could surmise that during these times David used a harp to aid his praise. Even in the wilderness David had his accompaniment. Would you take time now to pour over Psalm 63 asking the Lord to speak to you in some way with truth you can hold onto?
For me, the Lord whispered a couple of insights. Your insights possibly differ greatly from mine. The Spirit helped me see from this passage that the Lord himself can be the accompaniment of our lives when we "meditate on [Him] in the watches of the night; ..." and "cling to [Him]". Many who are living solo find deeper and more intimate ways to commune with the Creator as they meditate on and cling to Him. The second insight the Lord offered reminded me that even from a distance we can assist those who are living solo with accompaniment in their lives. This time could be the perfect time to sponsor a child from another place together through an organization like www.onemorechild.org. Work together with someone to change someone's life forever. Facetime with someone who lives alone. Sing together. Laugh together. Tell stories. Read a chapter from a new book together. Send a letter. Do a bible study. Families can connect from a distance with those who have given their lives to help others yet are now learning new ways to offer their worship and praise to the Father.
What did the Lord share with you from Psalm 63? Consider writing the thoughts down. Even better, consider reaching out to someone who might need some fresh accompaniment in his or her life. New life music birthed during this time offers excitement and richness that we often miss when the accompaniment comes too easy. Let's be artists for each other and see what the Lord provides.