There is a chapter in the lives of many if not all leaders that involves a period where you feel alone, cut off, isolated from others…even while in the midst of a crowd and a perpetually busy schedule. It is a chapter when God is driving your “life message” deeper. It is a time when heaven is bringing greater depth and dimension to you and your life work. Think of the Christians who have been imprisoned for a season. Paul himself experienced this. Think of those who have been forced to withdraw from ministry for a period of time. This is “isolation processing.” Read what Bobby Clinton has to say about this.
Isolation works in other ways as well. Jesus' frequent withdrawal into the wilderness or a mountain was so that he could drill down and intercede into what was most important – His mission, message, and the molding of the handful of men entrusted to Him who would carry on His work. These are the ones who you pour into. The ones connected to your mission who reap an even greater harvest than you do! It is in the times of being “unseen” and hidden that we go deeper. The “secret place” involves secret dealings and time away from the public gaze.
There are times when we are the ground breaker and carrier of a message and there are times we have to back up and let others lead…rejoicing in the progress of the message – even when the carrier is not one of our group. The disciples tried to stop a fellow from doing what they did simply because he wasn't following with them. Jesus corrected them.
In His final hours Jesus told his core team “you are those who have continued with me in my tribulations…” Get that? The disciples had to endure “HIS” tribulations. Maybe you are not enduring a personal conflict, maybe you are enduring the reproach of Christ and it is falling on you? What a privilege. Because the disciples were faithful to go thru the 3 year training process there was “appointed to them a kingdom”…or an “inheritance” in the leader's mission. They were given fields of harvest that would be accessed when He was finished with His course.
His message would live on in those that he loved, and that loved Him to the end. Likewise your life lives on in the harvest of those who have been faithful to endure the warfare that surrounds your calling.
Enjoy every season. The time of being “hidden” and the time of being released to “run.” Know that isolation… even a brief season of loneliness, is meant to bring you into a deeper discovery of who you really are, what you really believe and who God is in your life.
Ever experience this?