Loneliness… I’ve learned that you don’t have to be alone to feel lonely.
There are over 5 million people on this earth, if loneliness could be cured just by their presence of others then wouldn’t there be less loneliness in this life? But our loneliness lingers. I’ve learnt that you can be surrounded by a supportive family or a wonderful church and still be lonely.
To reach the realisation that I can be lonely no matter who is around, I had to realise that loneliness is not the absence of faces in my life, but the absence of intimacy. It’s not being alone but feeling alone, and there is a big difference between being alone and feeling alone. For me loneliness is when I think “I fell so alone. Does anyone understand? Does anyone care?”
We spend so much time trying not to be lonely. But should we really be trying to off load the feeling of loneliness or is this our cue to embrace God with both hands? When we have no other choice, no other option, no where else to go. When the silence in our heads and hearts is so loud…lets take a chance and focus on God. He can be the friend we need… He can soothe the soul.
Loneliness may be God’s indication to us that we need to focus on Him. Hebrews 12:6 says “The Lord disciplines those he loves” and if he needs to silence the other voices in our lives to do that then He will! God wants us to know that no matter what we face, we don’t face it alone. Unemployment, marital struggles, debt, betrayal by friends, family turning against us, death… The Lord is with us, we are not alone.
When we know that God is with us no matter what we won’t be desperate for the love of others, we won’t fear facing life alone, because we are not.
So maybe our loneliness is actually Gods gift to us and our loneliness is His way of teaching us to hear Him in the noise and clamour of this world.