Spiritual Practice


Cary Knier Johannes & Andrea Fortenberry

When I moved to Minneapolis for college, I didn’t know anyone. I wanted to explore new places, but I didn’t want to go out by myself. Eventually, I mustered up enough courage to go to a movie and an Indian restaurant.

At the theater, I sat off to the side, worried that someone would notice I was alone. Nobody did. Once the movie started, I forgot about my fears.

Later, when I entered the restaurant, the hostess asked, “Will anybody be joining you?”

“No,” I replied with a fake smile. “Just me.” Once again, I felt awkward; but with the first few bites of food, delicious new flavors burst in my mouth. I think I was enjoying the food more since there was no conversation to distract me.

I was proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone to do something alone. Since then, I have grown to enjoy doing things alone some of the time. Our society often sends the message that if we are alone, we must be lonely. That is not true. In fact, the Bible teaches us that it is good at times to get away from the busyness of life and to enjoy some time alone with God. Why not give it a try?

—Cary Knier Johannes


There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 18:24b (NIV)

A NEW PERSPECTIVE: As a teen, I felt sorry for people who were eating alone. When I started working at the mall, I had no choice but to eat alone on my lunch breaks. I was surprised when I began to enjoy it. I learned that when I’m alone, I can be quiet. When I’m quiet, I can think and pray. When I think and pray, God can speak to me.

—Andrea Fortenberry

—from devozine (July/August 2013). Copyright © 2013 by The Upper Room®. All rights reserved.
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