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Workbook day 22 (PDF content)

Day 22
Isolation
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As men, we have a tendency to isolate ourselves when stressed, confused, embarrassed, or ashamed. Especially in American culture, we tend to go into our “cave” to think things through. Some of this is okay, as it allows us time to process the events of our lives, but problems arise when we stay in those caves and stay in isolation. No one is meant to stay isolated from their family, friends, and children. We are meant to be in vibrant, meaningful relationships.

When a predator is hunting its prey, it will seek to isolate the weak, sick, or smaller ones from the rest of the herd, then attack, and kill. The devil operates the same way. He seeks to isolate men from relationships, especially with Jesus and family. He wants to keep them weak and bound to the fear, shame, or rejection that drove them into isolation, and then move in for the kill.

Even Jesus got away to meditate and pray. This in itself is not a bad thing at all. Jesus drew away for the purpose of connecting with the Father.

“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” - Luke 5:16 (NIV)
Jesus left this as a tremendous example for us today.

Q: When you isolate or withdraw into your cave, what do you do there? Why are you there?
Q: How can you use this time, like Jesus, to connect with the Father? (study, worship, music, etc.)

Strategically develop a plan to incorporate “connection time” into your alone time.

Q: What can you do? How can you do it?

There have been many examples in the media that have portrayed men as isolated and disconnected in need of no one. This is selfishness. At its root, pornography is about self and pleasing one’s self. Isolation is really about self as well. Often with good excuses, hurts or private passions cause men to distance themselves from the people and things that are very important to them.

“A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; He rages against all wise judgment.” - Proverbs 18:1 (NKJV)
Recognize What’s Driving Isolation

Q: Are you a person who isolates himself often?
Q: What do you think is driving you to isolate yourself?
Q: Are you building bad habits in isolation? What are you accomplishing?
Q: If your isolation is not serving you positively, what habits or triggers are driving you into isolation?

Habits developed in isolation or drive men to isolation start to remove us from the most valuable people in our lives. This needs to change! We need people! Men are called to be influencers and leaders.

Men are Built to Pour into the Lives of Others

We all have a sphere of influence. As men, we are called to be leaders, but first we must lead ourselves well. Think of the people you are pouring yourself into. Think of how your actions will influence those around you.

  • Spouse
  • Girlfriend
  • Children
  • Co-Workers
  • Friends
  • Neighbors
  • Those you mentor
Q: Do you pour into others? What are you pouring?

Keys to Breaking Out of Isolation

We as men, are part of the community, not an island unto ourselves. We need to be connected to other people.
  1. Recognize that Men Isolate Themselves. What drives you into isolation? What do you do when your angry, lonely, tired?
  2. Establish Accountability. Who can you trust to help you break out of isolation?
  3. Get Moving. What do you love to do? What do you have to give to others?
    What activities can you get involved in?
  4. Re-enter Other’s Lives. Get involved with those around you. Go to lunch, out to coffee, or do something else with some friends.
  5. Release Your Gifts. You are a gifted person and those gifts need to be given to others. No one is a “one talent” person. You have value to give to others.
    • Encouragement
    • Fathering
    • Mentoring