Monday, November 17, 2014

Facing Loneliness - Martin Wiles

You have taken away my companions and loved ones. Darkness is my closest friend. Psalm 88:18 NLT

The cloud of loneliness hung heavily above her. She appeared to be out of options.

Sarah* was in her senior years. Her husband had died five years ago. Initially, she enjoyed her independence, but her freedom from responsibility for another soon turned into a sea of loneliness. An empty house, one place setting at the table, a bed with too much space, financial burdens, no one to talk to or scold for not completing her “honey-do” list—it was more than she could endure. When the chance came for her to marry a man she’d known most of her life, she jumped in with both feet. Sadly, Sarah discovered she could be lonely even in a crowd. 

The thread of loneliness bled through the psalmist’s anxiety. Loneliness is a state of being that affects my state of mind. The mind body connection is astonishingly real. A faltering emotional state can affect my physical health just as poor physical conditions play havoc with my emotions. Realizing the connection is essential for understanding why loneliness affects one as it does.

Feelings of aloneness often accompany the emotional state of depression. Even when children and a spouse are present, walls can close in. When they’re gone—for whatever reason, the walls can crash. Loneliness is no respecter of persons. Satan uses it to swamp believers and unbelievers alike.

The psalmist cried out to God in his loneliness. Not a bad idea. In fact, prayer—along with meditating on God’s Word, is a good way to drive away the woolies of loneliness. Finding friends who are more than the fair-weather type also helps. Having someone that is willing to listen to your trials and misgivings and stand by you in good times—as well as the times of despair, is priceless. Above all else, knowing God has promised to never leave or forsake you provides the most comfort. He is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. 

Is loneliness getting the best of you? Cry out to the one who is the healer of all diseases.

Prayer: Matchless healer of emotional and physical states, our hearts and cries rise to You for the comfort we need and believe You’re able to deliver. 
*Name changed to protect the individual’s privacy.

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