AUGUST 14: OH SO LONELY

OH SO LONELY
By: Darrelyn L. Tutt

Chris is experiencing a severe "drought" in her spiritual life.
She speaks thoughtfully and practically to tangible evidences of concern:
-Bible reading is undesireable and difficult.
-Communion with fellow believers feels forced, shallow, and superficial.
-Prayer is an offering up of dry desperate words followed by a hollow, quiet response.
-Obedience appears to procure no advantage.
Loneliness has pervaded and invaded Chris's aching soul for the past ten months of her twenty-five year walk with God.
She is experiencing confusion, confliction, and disorientation.
Her question is one which many of us have asked at different points and in different seasons of our lives:
Where is the "comfort" of the Holy Spirit?
Hmmm ...
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Periods of isolation and feelings of abandonment are shared by the most seasoned of believers, and an understanding of this "shared" experience breathes hope and life into the spirit and helps it to rebound and return to life.
Dark periods, while temporarily immobilizing, tend to breed long-term empowering traits of compassion and empathy.
   In a desire to encourage and lend practical support to readers experiencing "Chris's Condition," I offer three valuable and practical considerations:
1) Open up God's word.
Select one prophet or disciple that illuminates the area of loneliness and speaks to "you" on a personal level. The prophet Jeremiah speaks profoundly to me in dry and arid seasons of my life, never failing to remind me that even the best of men faced the loneliest of times.
Jeremiah is my "identifying companion" when my soul feels at its deepest, darkest, and loneliest.
He transmits a tender light when shadows loom dark around me.
Jeremiah and Lamentations never fail to empower me.
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2) To write or not to write.
Writing wields productive results whether one is a writer or not.
To place a pen in the hand and tangibly record the isolated "scene of the soul" within is wise, instructive, and valuable.
To form and articulate concrete thoughts and put them into writing is a sizeable endeavor that suggests both conquest and permission to feel, and ultimately heal, from bouts of loneliness and soul despondency.
Open up to the Psalms and reflect on the internal patterns of David's bouts of loneliness.
Consider the value in "his" writing and allow it to spur your own.
Select one helpful Psalm and write it out with your own pen.
You'll be amazed at what it initiates and instigates in you.
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3) Continue heathy disciplines.
Despondency is not the time to forsake healthy habits but a time to insist and persist in them. Feelings of isolation, loneliness, and even abandonment are subject to great fluctuation and they will not last forever.
Eventually, loneliness will give way to a depth, intimacy, and communion with Christ that few things can rival.
You will be of better service, in the end, to Christ and those around you for having had suffered immmobility of spirit.
Be gentle with yourself and stay near the comforts of truth and grace which will never leave you.
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-God has promised to never leave or forsake you, dear Reader.
-God has promised and pledged His promises as an internal and personal provision to you.
Keep them alive in you ... no matter what.
-God has sealed you with the presence of His Spirit and He will provide comfort to you in His way, in His time, and in His power.
Secure pure and timeless solutions from God's word for yourself and record today's date beside three passages in the Scripture that speak to you.
You'll read them one year from now ...
And God's faithfulness will be remembered.
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