Thoughts for this week

Handling Loneliness

‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’

Hebrews 13:5

Somewhere beyond loneliness, there’s a contentment that’s born of necessity. When all your options in the natural realm seem closed, doors can spring open in the spiritual realm. That’s when you begin to see the possibility of having the kind of relationship with God you never had before. John was alone on the island of Patmos, a penal colony like Alcatraz, when God caught him up and took him on a trip through the glories of heaven. As a result we have the book of Revelation. Paul was in prison when he wrote his greatest epistles. In Genesis, God did His miraculous work of creation when He was alone with no one to applaud Him, so He praised Himself saying, ‘It was very good’ (see Genesis 1:31NLT). And you must learn to do that too. When others say nice things it reflects their opinion of you. But when you can speak well of yourself it reflects your opinion of you – and that’s the one you live with every day. To get a handle on loneliness, you must do away with the notion that anybody’s company is preferable to your own. Genesis 2:18 reminds us that we were designed to have companions, but there are still times when you need to draw close to God to remind you that you’re not alone, and help you fill the spiritual emptiness within you. Think about it for a moment and you’ll realise that sometimes the solution to loneliness isn’t people, it’s purpose. It’s not a lack of affection, but a lack of direction. And when you need purpose and direction for living there’s only one place to go – to God!