From a sermon for Lent 1 by Dr. Robert Crouse:
A certain wilderness is necessary for the clarifying of the Spirit. Turn off the noise for a bit, and shun the continual distractions for awhile. There is a powerful modern prejudice in favour of busyness; even the Church seems determined to keep us busy. Even when we have retreats, which used to betimes of quietness, the inclination now is to turn them into conferences with discussion groups.
The ancient Christian hermits, the "Desert Fathers," as they are called, had a point when they claimed that the real battles of the spirit, the real confrontations with our devils, take place in quiet and isolation. Lent calls us to participate, at least in some small way, in that flight to the desert, to try to see ourselves clearly in the undistracted light of God's word, to identify our illusions so as to be free of them.