“When you get down, let God’s grace get you up.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – December 13, 2021
A time is coming and in fact has come when you will be scattered, each to your own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me. John 16:32
In some seasons of my life I have felt very lonely. At age 12, after hearing of my mom and stepfather’s divorce—I crawled into my bunk bed and wept. I prayed to God and asked why I couldn’t have a dad like my friends. I felt very alone—my fledgling faith offered little comfort. At age 19, after becoming a Christian, my fellow college students could not comprehend or accept my new behavioral boundaries. I felt abandoned, left alone. I looked for others who loved Jesus. As an adult I’ve had similar times of unsolicited isolation. Though I felt lonely—I was not alone.
Jesus described this scenario of being left alone, but not being alone. He verbalized to His disciples how they were about to be scattered and how Jesus would be left by Himself to face His accusers. In Christ’s greatest time of need those He needed most fled from His presence. As Jesus faced His arrest, trial and death, the disciples’ fear superseded their loyalty to Christ. Jesus was left alone by many who loved Him the most, yet He was not alone. His Father was with Him. Loneliness can strike down the most devout followers of the Lord, but they are not alone.
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged” (Deuteronomy 31:8).
Have you been left alone by those you thought would never leave you? Have life’s pressures driven people from your presence? Job loss, health issues, loss of a loved one—all can isolate you. If you are in a season of loneliness, do not be surprised if some do not remain with you. Friends can be fickle when you face adversity. Family can grow silent when they don’t know what to say. In fact, it is during your hardest times that you learn who loves you the most. Do not fall into a pit of pity. Rise above self-pity with your focus on your heavenly Father. When you get down, let God’s grace get you up. You are not alone when the Lord is with you!
It’s in our loneliness that the Lord can become the most real. Our aloneness is our opportunity for authenticity. We see our true faith when solitude strips away the trappings of trust. As long as we are sucked in by stuff’s distractions and the world’s noise, we become deaf to the deeper things of God. Our spiritual ears eventually close when waxed by constant stimulation. Hence loneliness, especially during painful periods, is our divine appointment to commune with Christ. Trust learned at this level of desperation is not soon forgotten. We may be lonely, but we are not alone!
“Then Haggai, the Lord’s messenger, gave this message of the Lord to the people: ‘I am with you,’ declares the Lord” (Haggai 1:13).
Heavenly Father, draw me close to You, especially when I feel the farthest away, through Christ’s love and in Jesus’ name, amen.
If you feel lonely this season, seek out those who love you and say out loud your feelings of isolation. Open your heart to intimate conversations and care.
Genesis 26:3; Psalm 56:9, 118:6; Matthew 28:20; Romans 8:31
Kari Jobe: I Am Not Alone
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