Loneliness

Introduction:

All of us at time have felt loneliness. It may because of separation from loved one or moving to a new place or situation. We can especially feel lonely in a crowd of people because we see other people enjoying themselves together but we are by ourselves. It can lead to various emotional, social and physical sickness.

How do we define loneliness? David Jeremiah in "Slaying the Giants in your Life" defines it this way. It is a sick feeling in the stomach that seltzer water (medicine for upset stomach) can not cure. It is an anxiety that does not come or go, but remains with you at all times and smothers you in the quiet of the night. It is is a sharp pang that jolts through you when you remember an old experience. It is a subtle stress that quietly wears you down and you  lack energy or enthusiasm. Above all, loneliness is a longing for completeness. What does the Bible say about this topic and how we can deal with loneliness? That is the purpose of this study.

Bible  Study of God's Word

As you go through this lesson, read the verses in the Bible to help you find the answers. Try reading the verses first in a Bible in your own language (Chinese) and then in an English version. Note: these studies are based on the text of the New International Version.

Note: The Bible verse references below are linked to an English version of the Bible, usual the New International Bible. If you would like to follow the Bible verse link, it would be good to "right click" on the Bible verse link and choose to open in new window  resized the window so that you can quickly go back and forth from this page to the verses. Try to write down your answers to these questions.

  1. Examples of people who felt lonely and misunderstood

King David

King David was chosen as God as a young man to become the future King of Israel. He was the most successful and well know of the kings. He was know as a man after God's own heart (Acts 13:22). God promised that one of his descendants would be the savior and eternal ruler of mankind. This was  and will be fulfilled in Jesus Christ. (2 Samuel 7:11-16). David was also the author of many of the Psalms in the Old Testament. Let us look at two of these Psalm as David describes his feelings of loneliness.

Read Psalm 102:3-7 and Psalm 142:4.

  1. What is the theme of these Psalms? Knowing who David is, how can these verses be an encouragement when we feel lonely?

Jeremiah

Jeremiah is known as the weeping prophet. He was a faithful prophet of the Lord God who through his life warned his people Israel that God would judge them if they continued to disobey God. He lived to see the fulfillment of God's predictions as he watched Jerusalem the capital of Israel being concerned and destroyed and his people being taken away into a foreign country.

  1. Read Jeremiah 9:2. How would you describe his mood in this verse? (See also Jeremiah 20).

Apostle Paul

Paul was a great evangelist, teacher and started a number of churches throughout western Asia and southern Europe. He was used by God to write 13 books in the New Testament. If anyone could be called a faith servant of the Lord it would be Paul. At the end of his life he wrote his last book to a friend called Timothy. Read 2 Timothy 4:9-16.

  1. As you read these verses, how would you describe Paul's mood and feelings? What in his circumstances has prompted theses feelings? Is there anything we can learn from Paul's experience?

 

Jesus the Son of God

Do you think that Jesus ever felt lonely? One of the last things Jesus said before He died on the cross is interesting. Read Matthew 27:45-49. (see also Matthew 26:36-75) Note: the cup in v. 39, 42 refers to the suffering he was to face as he is arrest and crucified.

  1. Why do you think that during the last few hours of His life on earth, in the unnatural darkness during the afternoon (the sixth to ninth hour of the day would be from noon to 3:00 p.m.) that Jesus felt the loneliness of being forsake, rejected by God his Father?

     

  2. What other events in the final day of Jesus life would have intensified Jesus' alienation and loneliness?

     

Summary thoughts:  To feel lonely is not a sin, but we sin when we begin to focus on it or let it control our lives and ruin our lives. It is a sin when we begin to ignore the Bibles answers to overcome these feelings. Let us look at the Bibles answers to give us freedom from being enslaved to feelings of loneliness. 

 

  1. Help for the Lonely

     

  2. Acknowledge the Reality of Your Loneliness

  1. What is common to the four great men of God we have studied above? How did they respond to their loneliness?

     

  2. How do you respond to feelings of loneliness? Have you ever expressed you feelings of loneliness to another person and they have not taken your feelings seriously or told you that you should not feel this way? Did this help you or how did you react? Does this give you an idea of how you should react to others who tell you they are lonely?

  1. Accept God's Provision for Your Loneliness

     

    1. Why did Jesus Christ come into the world and face the suffering and ultimate loneliness of the cross? See answer #4 above.

       

    2. When we feel lonely we have a promise from God that we are not alone. What is that promise (John 1:12-13; 14:15-18)?

       

  2. Allow God's Word to Fill Your Mind and Heart

    In God's word there are many verses that can comfort you in your loneliness if you allow it to fill your mind.  Try memorizing some of these verses so they will become a part of your thinking process. Here are some of many verses to consider.

     

    1. Psalm 27:10

    2. Hebrews 13:5-6

    3. Romans 8:38-39

       

  3. Get Connected with Your Network of Christ Friends

    You may feel lonely because you are separated from your friends and family. If we have believed in Jesus Christ, who He is and what He has done for us then He has given us another family that can be found everywhere.

     

    1. What is that family (John 1:12-13; Ephesians 1:5;  1 John 1:7)?

       

    2. How does this benefit us in our loneliness (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)?