What my 40 Days of Sabbatical Taught Me
23 May 2017 | By Vinod Salve
Recently God gave me an opportunity to spend a period of 40 days alone at a place that I have never been to, cut off from my family, friends and colleagues.
It was a beautiful opportunity for me to relax, unwind and most importantly seek God and His plans for my life. Through this post I want to share with you certain things that I learned during this time of my personal walk with the Lord.
Have a goal/s
If you plan to take a similar break, even before you start packing your bags, I would encourage you to set your mind on a specific goal that you are seeking. You may have lot of things in your mind but still list down reasons why you are planning to cut off, eg: memorising word, praying, fasting, breakthroughs, seeking God etc. If you don’t have specific goals, pray for a clear direction, else you will be only shooting arrows in the air. Be led by the Spirit in whatever you do.
Stay in prayer
Stay in prayer. During this important time of your walk with God one of the most significant things you can do is to ‘Pray In Tongues’ or Pray. Your prayer must include-Thanksgiving, Worship and Praising. Praying in tongues will unlock the heavenly doors and you can get clear instructions from heaven.
Plan well ahead
Ensure you plan everything well in advance regarding your accommodation and food to avoid a delay or distraction in this time.
Cut off from distractions
I would advice you, in these days of your walk with God, to stay away from all sorts of distractions like Phone calls, Whatsapp, Facebook, TV etc. If you can manage to do this, you will find that you are able to control your day and save much time to seek the Lord. At the same time stay in touch with your pastors and parents, keep them informed about your well-being (else don’t know about God, but cops will certainly come searching for you!!)
I would prefer to pray in the early morning. However due to certain reasons if you are not able to get up early morning to pray or you are finding it difficult, do not be disappointed as the day is not yet over. Don’t loose a grip on what God is leading you to do. Keep persisting.
Disengage and focus
Don’t engage yourself too much with the strangers around you. Remember you have gone there to draw close to God not for making friends. Be wise and focus on what you have prioritized.
Take a prayer partner along
If you ever decide to take a sabbatical I would suggest you to take someone who is equally hungry or passionate for His presence and has the same or more faith two by two. This is because there may be a time where you need spiritual uplifting or someone to encourage you when you don’t feel like praying or reading the word of God. A good praying partner will help you to keep the game up. There is a verse in John 14:12-14 which says we can do greater things than Jesus. Yes that’s true and I too believe in that, but many people negate the fact that there is a time and process you go through where God prepares you on a certain level or degree. Taking strong spiritual buddy with you will give you an added advantage. However if you cannot find a partner, no worries, you can still go ahead (like I did).
Don’t run away
Don’t run away when trials and tribulations hit you! If you fail in the trials don’t give up on God. He is for you not against you!
Finally, your time alone with God is so that you know Him more intimately. If you are thinking God is going to get moved by this act of yours, you are setting up for a failure. God has ALREADY moved through Jesus. This is for you to move up in your faith-stairs!!