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Loneliness


Question: "What does the Bible teach about Loneliness and how to overcome it?"

Answer Loneliness affects millions of people even in a day of instant social networking & communication. FaceBook, Twitter, email, cell phones, and instant messaging technology has made the problem of loneliness even worse. Many have hundreds of friends in these communities, but little or no real friends. According to some psychologists loneliness has a destructive influence on physical and mental health. Studies indicate that loneliness being a contributor to cases of depression, paranoia, suicide, and other diseases. There are also polls that indicate that the life span of lonely people is shorter than that of connected people. God created us for community and to be connected in fellowship with other believers in the body of Christ. Speaking from personal experience as a single and struggling with loneliness for a long time, I can say that what best helped me was finding fellowship with other believers. I used to attend a church with a weak and heavily neglected singles ministry. The few singles that were in the church often did not show up, and many of them left for more healthier churches. I tried for a year to find fellowship in that church but my efforts failed. I was quite discontented with that church and was looking for something else. The Lord answered my prayer and brought me to a church with a active and healthy singles ministry, and consequently my feelings of loneliness have been all but gone.

Loneliness in the Bible


David the King

Psalms 27:9-11 (NKJV)
Do not hide Your face from me; Do not turn Your servant away in anger; You have been my help; Do not leave me nor forsake me, O God of my salvation.10 When my father and my mother forsake me,Then the LORD will take care of me.11 Teach me Your way, O LORD, And lead me in a smooth path, because of my enemies.


As we see in the text David struggled with loneliness and the Lord is not granting him protection on his timetable. David prayed with anxiety and desperation in this text to the Lord. David new quite a bit on loneliness and also spoke on comfort as well (Psa 23:1-4).


Jeremiah the prophet


In the book of Lamentations the prophet Jeremiah writes about the city of Jerusalem going up in flames and Jeremiah's people going up in flames. Jeremiah preached a hard message, and a message that no one would hear. This no doubt created a sorrowful reaction as would be expected of anyone that preaches and does evangelism and getting no converts or audience. Not many would consider an evangelism effort a success if no one comes to salvation. Many today are pragmatic and always want to apply the methods that leads to the most "numerical success." Thank goodness Jeremiah continued to preach and obey God regardless of the numerical results.  He is a prophet we all can learn from today.


Jesus


In Matt 26:36-44 Jesus went to the garden to pray and brought a few of his disciples with him. He wanted encouragement, comfort, and some to stand with him. But unfortunately, they all fled and did not stand with him when he needed their support. The humanity of Christ shows up in this passage as Christ also was temped as we are, but could not sin (Heb 2:18). Its not fun to suffer and a reason why Christ himself knows personally the burden that the lonely bear, and why Christians should be welcoming of all people (Heb 13:1-2). Its not easy to welcome and love people whom are "unlovable" but maybe these people are the way they are because they are lonely and just need people to show them Christ like love.

 

How to handle and conquer your loneliness

I. You are not unlovable
 

Isa 54:10 (NKJV)
For the mountains shall depart And the hills be removed, But my kindness shall not depart from you, Nor shall My covenant of peace be removed,” Says the LORD, who has mercy on you.


If you do not know Christ and are considering suicide, STOP and come to faith in Christ. If you are a Christian and are lonely, mediate on Hebrews 13:5 which says that God desires to never leave you or forsake you.

II. Don’t feel sorry for yourself & don’t compare yourself to others.


Psalms 147:3 (NKJV)
He heals the broken hearted And binds up their wounds.

Deut 33:27 (NKVJV)
The eternal God is your refuge, And underneath are the everlasting arms, He will thrust out the enemy from before you, And will say, ‘destroy!’

God made you just the way you are and knows your situation perfectly. If you compare yourself to others you are showing that you are not "content" with God's provision in your life.

III.Cry out to God in your loneliness

John 16:33 (NKJV)
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world, you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.

Phil 4:7 (NKJV)
and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.


Recommended Resources:
How to deal with Loneliness by John Wolf
Slaying the Giants in your Life by David Jeremiah

Overcoming Loneliness by David Jeremiah

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