December 27, 2018
"They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony." Revelation 12:11a (NIV)
The worst kind of lonely for me is being surrounded by people and yet still feeling utterly alone.
I can feel it at a restaurant full of noise and activity and people talking loudly over one another. I can feel it in a mall bustling with crowds and overhead announcements and music meant to move everyone along. I can feel it even in a house full of voices I know with all the typical background noises of this place I call home.
The world is spinning, people are connecting, and music is playing ... and there I am in the middle of it all, smiling on the outside but crying on the inside.
It's like one of those Broadway show moments when all the other actors are frozen in a moment of activity, but the spotlight gets thrown on the unsuspected girl stage left. She sings a sorrowful solo about all that's going on inside her world. And the brokenhearted ballad strikes a chord inside the part of us that feels so very alone as well. We swallow hard, because it could so very easily be us singing that same song in the midst of the crowds of our life as well.
Never have I understood this feeling more than when my marriage hit the roughest of places, and I didn't know who to turn to for help.
Part of the problem was I didn't know exactly what was going on. But the other part of my silence was because I wasn't sure what to say or who was safe to say it to. So I just walked through my days pretending to connect with others while feeling so very isolated.
Since I've broken my silence about this, I've been astounded by the number of women who feel the same way. They've slipped me notes in person or through social media that admit how very alone they feel because of a hurt they haven't been able to talk about or process.
This is a huge tactic of the enemy. He knows if he can isolate us, he can influence us. He can make us so consumed with the hurt and convinced it will never get better that we miss one of God's greatest gifts. God created us to do life in a community of believers where we can go stand on someone else's faith when our own gets shaky. People who can help us see the hope in the midst of our hurts. Friends who pray more words over us than they speak to us. Fellow journeymen who can share their testimony of heartbreak turned healing, so we don't get swallowed up by the pain of our similar circumstances.
We need each other.
God designed us to help each other.
Look at the very first two humans recorded in the Bible, Adam and Eve. Genesis 2:18 tells us, "The LORD God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him'” (NIV).
Throughout the Bible, we see our need for each other clearly communicated.
"Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up" (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, NIV).
"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing" (1 Thessalonians 5:11, NIV).
"They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony" (Revelation 12:11a).
Oh, how I love that last verse. God's message of hell-defeating hope is often most powerfully preached from the lips of those whose pain has been turned into the purpose of helping others.
Who do you need to share your tears with? Who needs to know they aren't alone?
I know how hard it is to open up about our deepest disappointments. I deeply understand how terrifying vulnerability can be. But I also know there's someone else in the world who would drown in their own tears if not for seeing yours. And when you make one other human simply see they aren't alone, you make the world a better place.
Father God, I'm so grateful You don't waste any of my tears. I want to take these lessons I'm learning in the midst of my own brokenness and use them to help someone else feel less alone, less broken, less hopeless. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
2 Corinthians 1:3-4, "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." (NIV)
One of our deepest desires here at Proverbs 31 Ministries is to reach those who feel painfully alone in their circumstances, and provide a safe place for them to get connected and get their hopelessness redirected with solid teaching and honest testimonies. If you have ever needed the exact message you received from Proverbs 31 Ministries through one of the many ways we reach out daily, will you consider partnering with us financially, so we can continue reaching those who are desperate for connection and hope? You can give here today.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
When has someone else's honesty about their struggles helped you? Is there anyone God has been nudging you to bravely share your story with? Join in the conversation here today.
© 2018 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.