by Cheryl S.
from Virtuous Daughters, February 2006~Volume 5, Number 11
"I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.”—John 14:18
Darling Virtuous Daughters,
“The Fellowship of Loneliness, what a strange title . . . what a paradox!” you must be thinking. But, dear girls, it is my hopes to show you just this. The greatest fellowship often comes during times of loneliness. Of course that fellowship is with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Now, girls, I have felt the depths of loneliness in my lifetime. I understand that when you are in the midst of it, it can feel quite sorrowful at times. So I write this with compassion knowing that if you are experiencing loneliness right now, you are probably experiencing pain along with it. But be encouraged, there is Hope and Help.
Girls, there are three main things I would like to share with you that I have learned about loneliness.
#1–Loneliness can be magnified by perspective.
During times of loneliness, we have a tendency to be self-absorbed. Our thoughts tend to be focused on ourselves, our needs, our desires, etc. Our perspective will likely be self-centered. Girls, if you think this describes you, ask the Lord to help you focus beyond yourself. Ask Him to give you someone to “minister” to. Perhaps a sibling needs extra love during a difficult time. Maybe your father or mother need your devoted attention to help with a project. Or, under your parent’s guidance, maybe an elderly neighbor would benefit greatly from your smile and time. Doing something for others in need takes the focus off of us, and often provides us with fellowship with the person we are ministering to.
#2–We cannot treat all of our feelings as truth.
Girls, this is a lesson that I think would benefit every female to learn. We girls have a natural tendency to be more emotional and gauge our thoughts and decisions from a more emotional perspective. How do we feel about this or that? When we feel lonely, we often take this as truth; that we really are alone in our situation. But, girls, if you have asked Jesus in your heart, He comes and stays! He is the One you can count on that no matter what your life holds, He will be with you.
Jesus said in Matthew 28:20, “...and lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen” Jesus also said in John 14:16-20, “And I will pray the father, and He shall give you another comforter, that He may abide with you for ever; even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth Him not, neither knoweth Him: but ye know Him; for He dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you. Yet a little while, and the world seeth Me no more; but ye see Me: because I live, ye shall live also. At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and I in you.”
Also, please take time to pray to the Lord and ask Him to reveal truths to you as you read and study Psalm 139.
#3–Use your time of loneliness as an opportunity to deepen your fellowship with Jesus Christ.
Now, girls, we should always be desiring to deepen our fellowship with Christ, whether going through loneliness or not, but during a time of loneliness our thoughts can be more focused without the many distractions that normally tend to take our time. Let’s look at some examples of this. First of all, have you ever considered the first slaves? Many times I have thought about how they were captured from their homes in Africa, being taken away on a ship across the ocean, far away from everything they knew and loved; knowing they would never see their families again, even if they were to escape. Truly, how lonely they must have felt! But not all of their stories ended in hopeless desperation because many of those slaves came to know Christ. This was evident in the numerous spirituals revealing their understanding that the life, pain, and world they knew was not forever. But they sang songs expressing their faith, hope, and joy in the midst of their pain. Think about the words of “Swing Low Sweet Chariot,” “Were You There,” “Nobody Knows de Trouble I See,” or “There is a Balm in Gilead.”
Furthermore, let’s consider King David of the Bible. When he was a boy, he tended his father’s sheep. Surely, this caused him to be physically alone most of the time, but yet was he ever alone? Look at 1 Samuel 17:37; here he is talking to King Saul about his time tending sheep. It says, “David said moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, He will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.” And of course the many Psalms written by David reveal the depth of his fellowship with his Lord.
So, dear girls, if you are experiencing the depth of loneliness, turn your focus on your fellowship with Christ. The sweetness of that depth is rewarding and eternal. It is the surest, truest, and greatest fellowship you will ever know on this earth. May the Lord reveal Himself to you as you fellowship with Him!
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