Loneliness. We’ve all experienced it, and yet ironically it feels like no one else can relate to us when we are in the thick of isolation.
I’d bet even reading the word “loneliness” brings up a memory of when you felt lonely. Maybe you’re experiencing loneliness right now. Whatever the case, loneliness is an issue many face and one becoming more and more prevalent in our culture.
Loneliness is a feeling or a state of mind, not just literally being alone.
Loneliness is not necessarily about being alone. If a person merely feels alone and isolated, then that loneliness can play into someone’s state of mind.
This feeling isn’t unique to one group of people. Children, young adults, marrieds and elderly people all experience loneliness.
When I think about my freshman year of college, I remember feeling intense loneliness. I was in a completely new environment with people I didn’t know in classes that were more demanding than I was used to. I didn’t know who I could process all these changes and transitions with.
There were days when I would walk from building to building on campus, surrounded by people, and yet not say a word to one other person. My thoughts would run wild. Who knows me? How will I make new friends? Who will I sit with in class? When will I finally fit in and belong?
Thankfully, this season in my life came to a close when I found a community of people who helped shape me into the person I am today. They pointed me to truth and gave me grace, and I felt known and valued more than I ever had before.
We were created to belong, experience wholeness, flourish in hope and find a life-changing community. Our hearts desire these aspects of life because it’s how we are wired. When we don’t experience these fundamental human needs, loneliness tends to creep in.
Recognize that you’re not alone. While it may seem like no one sees or understands, your feelings aren’t always the measure of truth.
Simply believing there are people who want to be your friend and that you were created for a purpose changes your perspective. You were created on purpose for a purpose. That’s the truth!
Remember that a season of loneliness is not permanent. Seasons change, and this one will too. There is a great hope for a connected, purposeful life.
We cross the line into worry when we start to dwell on the things we can't control. So how do we stop? And how do we prevent it?
"Perhaps we expect punishment from God, either because we see Him as a harsh master, or see ourselves as dead wood, deserving to be thrown away and burned."
Most life-changing encounters with God usually involve deep emotional, physical or psychological pain.
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