The telltale sign of loneliness

It’s no small gift that my friends who drop by to visit here allow me to speak openly about loneliness, struggles, and disappointments. Jesus, (I’m pretty sure of this), places a far greater value on truth than he does on “victory.” Heck, one of the greatest “victories” of my life was the day I found the guts to stop answering polite inquiries with religious slogans and start telling the truth.

In fact, I do get lonely. But loneliness is no cause for alarm. It simply confirms the idea that I was created in the image of God, who exists eternally in Trinitarian relationship. My yearning for inclusion is a telltale reminder that ultimate reality, (the Trinity), is in essence relational. Would not the Father or the Son feel the same “loneliness” if either was deprived of the company of the other?

Trouble is, none of us can experience complete “oneness” with the Father, Son, Spirit, or anyone else this side of eternity. “Now we see only a blurred reflection in a mirror, but then we will see face to face. Now what I know is incomplete, but then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known.” (I Cor. 13:12) Today I experience relationship only by degree.

But I’m happy to report I have begun to experience it this week even in the anthill busyness of America: little pockets of people and random conversations where friends have taken the time and trouble to remove the masks and visit. “Behold how good and pleasant it is … for there the Lord commands a blessing” (Ps. 133:1)

6 thoughts on “The telltale sign of loneliness”

  1. I think we get a pretty good indication of the intensity of the loneliness that did, in fact, occur at the cross — “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” It was the most horrible part of the crucifixion, that separation from God. It has always been a reminder to me, and an encouragement, that even knowing it would end, that brief interruption in relationship with the Father so so terrible for the Son. How delightful it must be in heaven, when we will finally know what that truly complete relationship will be.

    Till then, however, it is a blessing to have friends.

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  2. Hey my friend!

    I think you must leave ” ghosts ” of Sarajevo behind you and let time do the rest! Every new begining is hard.
    But sometimes loneliness can be good thing to learn more about ourself ! Also in that situation we can meet other lonely people and make comunity with them! Many people searched loneliness to ” find ” God (st. Augustine, st. Benedict… for example ) or Jesus Himself ( as you said ) everyone left Him, He was lonely too, but then He save the world

    Loneliness also can be dangerous if we become slaves of our own suffering! Don’t be closed in your own loneliness, speak about your feelings with the other people!

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  3. Dear Don, loneliness just makes us appreciate the time we get to spend with the ones we love more precious…I must admit though having two boys with me 24/7 and all in only 9 months …has helped me draw closer to our Creator more than I can ever remember.. 🙂
    Stay strong brother! And visit your family soon!!

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  4. Our homes are not built with “front porches” anymore…we have “back decks”, and to top it off, we built 6ft privacy fences around us to further create isolation. My neighbor, who is not a believer, decided to bring all his back deck furniture out onto the front driveway. In the evenings, he sits out and drinks a beer while one after another, neighbors stop by to sit awhile and chat. I love it! Often you can find me, sitting with my friend out in his driveway, talking with the neighbors and developing friendships. Neighbors who I had prevously only known by sight are asking me questions about God, faith, etc. Some evenings, I’ll find myself sitting around 6, 8 or 9 people, simply enjoying friendship and good conversation…and sprinkling Kingdom thoughts every now and then.

    My friend, this is an example of Kingdom living.

    Joel Chitwood
    Thornton, CO

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  5. WOW! Thanks, Joel! That’s a GREAT story. Isn’t that just what Jesus did? He “moved out into the driveway” and invited us in. It’s also a poignant reminder that we can learn about Jesus even from someone who doesn’t profess to know Him. THAT should rock some of our theologies!

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