Loneliness is strange, isn’t it? In my experience, loneliness has less to do with proximity and more to do with depth. You can be surrounded by people and still feel alone. We often say we are lonely when we feel overlooked or unknown. You may be acquainted with the men and women in your workplace, but you can still feel isolated in the office. You may be surrounded by children who talk and play with you; who sit in your lap all day long, yet still feel lonely. You may walk through crowded halls on your school’s campus and feel like you might as well be the only person there.
When I first moved to a new city, there was a woman at church who invited me to lunch with her and a few of her friends. “This will be better than having lunch by myself in my apartment,” I thought. But I sat at the table and felt utterly alone. There was longevity and depth to their friendships that would take me years to develop. All of my history and depth and familiarity was thirteen hours away.
Maybe you feel lonely for the same reason. Are there multiple people in your proximity? Probably. But is there depth and familiarity? Do you feel known and valued? If not, you are not alone—although the enemy is doing his best to make you think so. God wants you to remember that He loves you. He knows you better than anyone else and cares for you deeply. In fact, Jesus says that we are His friends (John 15:13). Jesus is the most patient, trustworthy, wise, caring friend who will never betray or desert you.
However, we were also made for companionship with others, so don’t give up pressing into relationships. God has created you intentionally and specifically. He knows you and He also knows that other people need a friend like you.
What does God’s Word say about Loneliness?
Joshua 1:9 Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Deuteronomy 31:8 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.”
Hebrews 10:24-25 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
Psalm 73:23-25 Yet I am always with you; you hold my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me up in glory. Who do I have in heaven but you? And I desire nothing on earth but you.
Isaiah 41:10 Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand.
Psalm 25:15-17 My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare. Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish.
Psalm 139:3-5 You have searched me, Lord, and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely. You hem me in behind and before and you lay your hand upon me.
Thank you for creating me and loving me. It’s amazing that you even care to know about me! Help me to value the friendship I have with you through Jesus. Help me to turn to you and listen to your truth rather than the lies of the enemy when I begin to feel lonely. Rather than further isolating myself because I already feel alone, help me to press into the relationships around me so that I can know–and be known by–others. I love you and I trust you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.