Lesson 179 - WHEN YOU WALK THAT LONELY ROAD (PART 3)
By Frank Eiklor and the Shalom Team
THE CHOICE WE MAKE
You and I have known loneliness, dear friend. We will know more; of that we can be sure. We have a choice in life’s difficult moments and tests. “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.” (John 16:33). We can let our loneliness drive us to the despair of self-pity, drugs, alcohol, foolish relationships, etc., or we can ask Jesus to light up the dungeon of loneliness with His love. God understands us because He made us. I’m discovering that when the inside of me feels loneliness, it is the real me crying out for more of Him. It’s a heart homesick for God.
Are you going through terrible loneliness or great loss? Has your dream suddenly vanished? Have you lost a loved one and asked a million “whys” with no answer? Has your health been so destroyed that you live in constant pain—and feel the loneliness that comes from knowing that no one really knows what you’re going through? Have you gone through a divorce that has left you thinking thoughts of suicide?
Or perhaps your circumstances are not that tragic, but inside you feel a hollow loneliness. Perhaps you are a successful businessman on the outside but feel terribly alone on the inside. Or a housewife who feels loneliness because your husband does not seem to understand. Or a young person struggling with loneliness while pretending to your friends that all is well.
A PLAN FOR WINNING THE BATTLE
There is an answer. Loneliness can be the signal for you to develop the most loving and lasting relationship possible—with the Lord. Consider the invitation, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden (or lonely), and I will give you rest….” (Matthew 11:28). Consider the promise, “I am with you all the days—perpetually, uniformly and on every occasion—to the very close and consummation of the age” (Matthew 28:20, Amplified Bible).
1. Reach out and begin to love the Lord. Learn to talk to Him about everything—everything—in prayer.
2. Sing songs that remind you of His reality. An old song that I like says, “How can I be lonely when I have Jesus only, as my one companion and unfailing guide…”
3. Take verses of Scripture as His audible voice to you and practice what He tells you.
4. Study the loneliness of others in the Bible and how they used those times to experience more of God’s reality. Read books that tell of the battles others have faced and fought successfully.
5. Reach out to other broken or fearful hearts and comfort them just as God comforts you (II Corinthians 1:5). You will always find others who are hurting as much or more than you, and it is in sharing their pain and being their friend that will cause your loneliness to disappear or grow less and less.
6. Develop one or more special friendships with loyal friends where you can open up your heart and tell them what you feel. If you don’t have such a friend, ask God for one.
7. Let the best of your best friends be Jesus, and when things really get rough, take a special walk with Him or just fall into His welcoming arms and open up your heart in worshipping and adoring the One who will never let go of your hand.
Remember, loneliness can be the heart’s way of reminding us that we are really lonely for more of the Lord. When you realize that, you’ll see why loneliness can be a blessing used by God to help you grow stronger in Him.
"Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ" (I Corinthians 11:1)
The ST. PAUL SCHOOL, with Frank Eiklor, Eileen Young and Cecilia Contreras