I’ve been thinking a lot lately about loneliness. What causes it? Who suffers from it? During the Christmas season I think about people who have lost loved ones, who don’t have family who supports them, and I especially think about orphans and foster children who just have no idea what their future holds. Not to mention emotional and spiritual loneliness. I can admit, I deal with it at times. I bet we all do, to a certain extent. We all battle thoughts of feeling unwanted, unloved, and even unnoticed.
But during this time of year, when so many people surround each other and love on each other, who are you leaving out? Who aren’t you supporting because you’re “comfortable?” During this season, I bet that lack of attention feels more like a dagger than a mere irritation. When we exclude others who need light in their lives, the world becomes exponentially darker.
I found a great (because it gets to the point quickly) article, called “God’s Answer to Loneliness.” I was interested in how the author pinpointed the causes:
Causes of Loneliness
• Past Rejections — You may have been rejected in the past, and you’re afraid to try again.
• Insecurity — In your mind, you may not feel worthy to be accepted, so you don’t reach out for other people.
• Grief — If you’ve experienced grief, you may feel like nobody understands how badly you hurt. You close up, drop out, hunker down, and live a lonely life of isolation because you think nobody understands.
• Self-centeredness — You may be all wrapped up inside of yourself. You live in a bubble of pride and self-centeredness.
• Sinful Lifestyle — Sin builds walls. Cain murdered his brother Abel and was driven away from the presence of God, from home, and from loved ones. (Genesis 6:13).
• The Depersonalization of Society — When you buy something in a store, you may never even make eye contact. You may live in a house and not even know your neighbors.
Yikes… I bet we can all see areas of this list we can relate with. But I believe during this season, we can battle our own loneliness by walking alongside someone else as they battle their own.
So instead of liking my Facebook post or sharing this article, I want to encourage readers to take charge and act on that feeling deep inside you telling you to step outside of your comfort zone and walk with a friend, relative, or even stranger. Sure, the short-term outcome is unknown and possibly messy, but the long-term rewards and bonds are so, so worth it.
And stop feeling like you’re not qualified! You are, because you care!