Reflection Questions for Times of Solitude
Last Thursday I got away for the day for a personal retreat. It was a great time of connecting with the Lord, reflection, solitude, and vision-casting. I returned home filled up and ready to be more purposeful in prayer, in my relationships with Nate and the kids, and in the Pilgrim House vision.
A good part of my time was spent going through the following questions. Our friend, Mark Carter of Torch Church in Illinois, came up with this reflection guide, and it helped me evaluate my heart as well as several different areas of life. Mark cheerfully gave me permission to share these questions here, in the hopes that some of them might speak to you, too, and re-energize you into a deeper walk with the Lord like they did with me. When and if you use this guide, please remember that it’s not meant to be taken legalistically – it’s simply a tool to help you search your heart before the Lord and help you identify potential growth and action areas. But give yourself grace – depend on the Lord’s guidance and strength for those areas in which you might want to be more purposeful, and be grateful for the things that are going well. And as you “slow down to speed up,” may the Lord meet you in a special and sweet way.
“SLOW DOWN TO SPEED UP”
Solitude Reflection Questions
by Mark Carter, Torch Church
– Is there anyone whose forgiveness I need to seek?
– Is there anyone I need to forgive?
– Where is the clutter in my life?
– Where am I ignoring something that God is telling me?
– What do I need to tell my accountability partner?
– Am I closer to God today than I was January 1? What’s my spiritual growth process for this year? Have I scheduled my Sabbaths for this month? All of this year?
– Have I scheduled deliberate dates on the calendar to determinedly seek solitude, ponder, seek contentment, and listen?
– What could I change in my devotional life? What book should I spend the money on?
– What does my fasting life look like?
– Where do I need to forgive myself and lighten up?
– Am I being too timid?
– Am I being too forceful?
– Am I being too arrogant?
– How is my submission to my authorities? Spouse? Pastor? Civil authorities? IRS?
– Would I rate my closest friendships a 10?
– (Marrieds) Would I rate my marriage a 10?
– (Marrieds) Would my spouse rate it a 10 (might want to ask over a nice dinner)? If it’s not a 10 ask this question, “What would it take to make it a 10 in the next year?”
– (Parents) Same question for each of my kids? Have I scheduled in date nights/ quality time with them for this year?
– Do I have a physical scheduled this year?
– What’s my major physical focus for this year?
– Are my finances in order?
– Do I have debt beyond my mortgage?
– What does God think about my present giving level?
– What are my reading goals for this year?
– What caused me the most stress in this last year? How am I going to fix that this year?
– Is there something I’m doing that knowing what I know now I wouldn’t do again? How am I going to fix this?
– What do I do “best” and how can I do more of it in this year and less of what I do “poorly”?
– What is a difficult or troubling situation in my life right now?
– What am I pretending *not* to know?
– What is my calling?
– What am I here for?
To hear the message to which these questions were an accompaniment, and to find a print-out of these questions, please click here.