Sing to God, sing praises to his name,… His name is the Lord… a father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun scorched land. Psalm 68:4-6
When I was young, I struggled with loneliness. I was awkward and shy and never quite knew the right words to say to people. I eventually made a few friends but social gatherings or new events by myself we’re difficult for me.
I remember in my twenties finally getting the courage up to attend a women’s Bible study at my church. I walked into a large room with rows of chairs set up, facing the front. As I slowly walked down the aisle, I saw an acquaintance I knew from church. I was so relieved and happy to see someone I knew! I went over to her and said “Hi”, and asked if I could sit beside her, she said, “No, I am saving these seats for my friends.”
I was embarrassed and crushed as I shuffled down the aisle to an empty seat; lonely in a crowd of Christian women. I don’t remember a word the speaker said, but I sure remember how I was treated. I never went back.
I know this story is hard for you outgoing, confident people that would have been just as happy sitting alone, as with a friend. But for those of us that have struggled in group settings we feel the rejection deeply. It was just another confirmation for me that I was awkward and different and not like other people, that I didn’t fit in. But the Lord would not let me stay in my loneliness and self-focus, He continued to pour His love out on me until I was ready to try again.
This time I found a group whose main focus was learning about the Lord, not gossiping about others. I found sincere seekers of the Lord have a lot in common and my insecurities and shyness begin to melt away as I became passionate about Jesus.
The Lord has given me many families now; my precious immediate family, my Bible study group family, my church fellowship family and my new Encouraging Word family. I’m not lonely anymore.
Don’t give up reaching out to people. We need each other. Keep trying! God has blessings and families in store for you.
Prayer: Praise you Heavenly Father! How blessed are the people of God! You know the deep needs of our hearts; you know our weaknesses and our strengths and you “place the lonely in families.” I love you Father. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
For further reading: Psalm 68