Have you ever been at a party and felt completely alone? Or at a family banquet and had no one you felt you could talk to beyond superficial chatter? I certainly have.
All of us, at one time or another, have felt the sting of loneliness. Whether as a forced shut in because of ill health, or in surroundings where others are literal strangers, or feeling so distant in perspective or viewpoint from others around me, I have sometimes felt unable to relate to or to confide in people nearby.
Loneliness is something to be aware of, to recognise it in our neighbours, and to be especially on the look-out for those who may be all alone. I’m learning to look out for people around me whom I don’t know. They live nearby but are either too busy or too reclusive to engage in conversation. I want to be better able to offer friendship when I spot someone who is isolated and alone. I want to be aware so I can choose to bless others, as part of my mission as a follower of Jesus.
But what if the person who is isolated is me — or you? Sometimes we might feel it is impossible to reach out. It is important then, to remember that, always we have Jesus. We who know him are never truly alone.
We all need human contact; we were created for relationship. But remember, our relationship with Jesus means that he is always near. Drawing close to him is a great comfort. When he was on the cross, Jesus was surrounded by others; and yet, he was utterly alone; he understands our needs and wants our fellowship. Time spent with him – in the Word, in prayer, in worship – is time spent in good company. No one likes to be alone all the time. But when our circumstances isolate us, we can remember he never leaves nor forsakes us; drawing near to him assures us that he will draw near to us (James 4:8).
May you be blessed in Jesus’ company at all times, whether you are by yourself or in the company of others.