Are You Feeling Lonely?
Are you feeling lonely? If that is the case, I am so sorry. That isn’t a fun feeling, but rather a sad feeling. Loneliness often comes during times of struggle and hardship. Maybe we have lost a loved one or broken up with a friend. Maybe we weren’t chosen to be on a team. Or, maybe we are feeling insignificant or upset because nobody visits with us. We may get all kinds of advice to deal with loneliness, however as Christians we may want to deal with it differently.
Loneliness is a State of Mind
Loneliness is a state of mind. We can be very alone, living in solitude and still feel bright, happy, loved, and at peace. We can also be in a crowd of people and feel lonelier than we have ever felt before.
The good news about loneliness is that if it is a state of mind, we can change it. It doesn’t have to be the product of our physical circumstances. Even if we can’t take steps to change our physical situation, we can take steps to change our emotions and state of mind.
Advice About Dealing with Loneliness
Many people have advice and opinions about dealing with loneliness. It is good to remember that many well-meaning people can give us advice that just isn’t helpful or right for us. Some not so nice people can give us “advice” that just makes us feel worse about ourselves and is meant to be a put down anyway. There are other people that may be giving us just the advice we need to hear, even though we might not feel it or agree with it at the time. Sometimes the best of advice is hardest to hear, especially if we are already feeling low. As we are feeling lonely, often times we don’t want to be open to solutions, even if those solutions might be just what we need. We might not believe that the advice of others are helpful, because after all, we feel that nobody understands what we are going through. Or, we might be confused as to what we need and how we can make things better.
The regular advice for getting through loneliness usually includes changing our mindset or ways for more companionship. Changing our mindset involves finding things to occupy our mind or changing the way we think about things. Ways for more companionship might include joining groups, talking with friends, or even getting a pet.
Reframing Loneliness as a Christian
Often times when we reframe things, it makes them easier to get through or even to heal. And, I believe that when we know how to deal with loneliness as a Christian, we have a whole new level of comfort.
When we are feeling lonely, sometimes we might think, “What is wrong with me?” We might feel that we are deformed or did something wrong, and that is the reason nobody wants to be around us. That is why we are so lonely.
While some people may be shallow enough to turn away if we are deformed, that doesn’t mean that we did something wrong. On the other hand, we may continually push people away either on purpose or without knowing it and that could be why we feel lonely.
However, if we are lonely, it doesn’t mean we did anything wrong. Let’s think about how Jesus may have felt on the cross. His friends all scattered when Judas betrayed him and he went through a terrible ordeal of being beaten, scourged, interrogate, falsely accused, and sentenced to death. Then, on the cross, he even asks God, our Heavenly Father, why He has forsaken him (Matthew 27:46, Mark 15:34). Of course, I can’t say for sure, but I would think Jesus was likely feeling very lonely at that point. And, we know that Jesus didn’t do anything wrong.
One thing to realize when we are feeling lonely, or anytime, is that even if we can’t rely on anyone else, we can always rely on God. There are many, many Bible verses that tell us that God is with us. We might think we are alone and that nobody cares, but God is with us (Isaiah 41:10, Matthew 28:20, John 14:16-18).
Often times, knowing that we are loved and aren’t alone helps. However, sometimes we think, “but you don’t understand.” Jesus does understand. He is our ultimate role model. He came to earth to experience things that we experience and to show us the way (1 Peter 2:21). And, he came to lay down his life for ours (John 10:18), and that is real love (John 15:13). So, Jesus definitely understands and he loves us very much. That should encourage us.
Sometimes, quite frankly, we may take things the wrong way. We may feel lonely, because people may not talk to us at some point or choose us for something. As a result, we may feel that nobody cares and nobody wants to be with us or wants to include us. Maybe we pushed them away unknowingly and they think we don’t want to be friends. Maybe we had told them that we are busy, so they don’t want to burden us further in asking us to do something. That is a prime example when we need to learn to not lean on our own understanding (Proverbs 3:5).
Maybe we are in a season where God is giving us “alone time” not to be lonely, but to find solitude and peace. Maybe we are meant to use this time to forget those around us and forget the stresses of the world, and instead get to know God better. Maybe we are meant to use this season of “alone time” to pray, fast (maybe fast from people and things of our every day life), and read God’s Word. Maybe we are meant to open our heart for new possibilities that God only wants to show us if we are quiet and closer to Him.
If you enjoyed this post, you may also like the following...
*Biblical Encouragement for the Depressed and Discouraged
*God Calls us to Pay His Comfort Forward
*Do You Encourage Others?
*Is There a Difference Between Friendliness and Friendship?
This is Jodi. I am so glad you are here! I am a Christian and life-long learner. I enjoy sharing and encouraging others. I pray you are blessed by this blog. Thank you for being here.