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  • Writer's pictureLaura Kae

Loneliness: Never a part of His calling

A quiet tear slipped down her cheek. She never understood the wall separating her from the others, preventing her from feeling like she was connecting with those around her. At home alone, the loneliness fled. It was in the crowd she noticed she was alone. Would she be alone forever?

I am sitting here tonight extremely grateful I have never been alone. Never once was He not pursuing me and inviting me to do life with Him. Lately I have been thinking a lot about loneliness. I have not felt lonely very often over the last few months. I just have been thinking about loneliness because a few weeks ago I had a random thought that God never asks me to be alone. It has taken me a couple weeks to think about this and ponder if it is true.

At some point all of us feel alone. There are those moments when we are sure no one around us can understand and the God of heaven does not care. Sometimes it feels like in order to do what God is asking us to do, we must be alone. I bought that lie for awhile awhile back. I got into a leadership position where I had to maintain anonymity and confidentiality. Since I did not have a co-leader, it meant I had to keep everything that happened to myself and God. I felt really alone. It felt like He had called me to a really lonely position.

I am not alone in feeling alone. Leaders often feel alone, but I do not believe that is how God asks me to lead. Jesus promised much hardship if I followed Him. I would have to live a life of sacrifice. I would be persecuted. I may even be cut off from my temporal family. But I cannot think of a place where Jesus says, “If you follow me and do everything I ask, you will be lonely.” I think He has promised just the opposite.

In school last year I was taught a theory by someone who’s name I cannot remember. It basically was this:

There are three levels of maturity in service. The third is most desirable. They are as follows:

  1. I have something you do not have. Let me help you. I am the benefactor. I am giving to you. You have nothing to give me. (Pity is a large part of this level of maturity. It is the way many people think of homeless people, people in third world countries and addicts.)

  2. Wow! I can grow as I serve and lead people. I am in this to help you, but I also realize you help me because serving you helps me grow in my walk of faith! I recognize that although I know more than you and have a deeper relationship with Christ than you (in my opinion), you still can give me something (a closer walk with God).

  3. I no longer see myself as a leader or really even as a helper. I see us as equals. You are my comrade on this journey in life. A brother or sister in Christ. We may be in different places spiritually, but I am just here to walk with you. To do life with you. I fully participate in the community where I serve. We are comrades, family; and this is life.

Over the course of the last few months, I have been able to move more and more into that third category. My life has started to integrate. The lines between doing ministry, making money, resting, doing chores, having fun and building relationships have blurred until it all seems connected as simply living life for Him.

Back to loneliness, I chose loneliness when I was that #2 servant. When I thought I was above and ahead of people. When I did not just share and partake with them. I have chosen loneliness during parts of my life when God and people surrounded me. I have experienced amazing community when the closest person I could relate to and share with was hundreds of miles away. I experienced God in those moments like never before.

My point in all this is to propose if we are lonely it is always because we are not reaching out to God or those God has placed around us. CR teaches loneliness is a choice. That teaching really bugged me the first few years I was at CR. “But often it doesn’t feel like a choice,” I would clarify for the newcomers.

I do not think Jesus ever promised us loneliness as a part of the sacrifice of following Him. He promises us His Spirit. He promises He will never leave us or forsake us. We are the Body of Christ (pretty connected!). So if you feel lonely tonight, as I so often have, how are you separating yourself from community? What can you do to change that?

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