There is nothing that makes you feel lonelier than being rejected by someone who you love. Loneliness is one of the Devil’s favorite tools to use against a believer of Jesus Christ. It seems like such an ironic tool to use against someone who is never alone, but, alas, it creeps up sometimes. A single person going through a hard break up, can feel very alone, especially in the church setting. Suddenly, the topic that everyone used to speak to you about every Sunday, became an untouchable one.
“The avoidance of the subject can often feel
like an avoidance of conversation all together.”
All the sudden, you are no longer on a path towards marriage, so you are looked at and addressed differently. They may mean you no harm, but what they are doing feels to you like a demotion. These things, along with the rejection of a loved one can lead to an overbearing sense of loneliness and can make it easy to forget that you are truly never alone.
I was recently immersed in this particular deceit from the Devil when my heart was broken by my first love. Maybe you were like me and had this belief that the first person you would let yourself fall in love with would be the one God had chosen for you, and you would spend the rest of your lives together. For some people, that is how it works out. In fact, that is how it happened for what seemed like everyone around me. That is not how it happened for me. The Devil fed lies to me day and night after my break up and I willingly believed them because of the intense hurt that seemed to be swallowing me.
“I must not have been good enough. I must not have loved him as well as I should have. I must have done something wrong. I am alone. I should have seen it coming. I shouldn’t have invested as much of my heart as I did. He saw me for who I really was and he ran away.”
All lies. All from the Deceiver, yet so easily and freely accepted by a wounded soul.
But, I can also say that the love of our Father has never felt so tangible to me than it did during that time.
There was (and still is) a battle going on in my heart. As the lies were streaming in, my Father was showing His love for me fervently. I couldn’t see it at the time, but it is so obvious to me now. He surrounded me with friends and loved ones who poured their lives and love back into my empty heart. They cried with me, laughed with me, prayed with me, held me, and sat silent with me when I had no words. They were the tangible hands and feet of Jesus. I still felt every rip and tear of my heart being pulled from my chest, but they were there beside me. It was no less painful, but I was not alone. You see, when the Devil strikes hard, the Father strikes harder. As the Deceiver was pouring in lies, my Father was slowly and gently reminding me of His truths.
One of the best ways to fight the loneliness from the Devil is talking with someone who can relate to what you’re going through. Who better to relate to than the God that has shown continuous and eternal love to a fallen world that repeatedly turns from Him? Come to find out, a lot of my friends had been through similar situations as me. The LORD put many people into my path who had stories that began with a broken heart like mine. I was so surprised to find out about these stories, that it had me wondering why I had not heard them before. Sometimes, as children of God, we feel we must put on this image that we have everything under control. That our lives are perfectly put together and planned. That is not the case at all. As a child of the Savior you can admit that you do not have everything under control, because you know the one who does. That’s when I came to realize:
It is okay to not be okay.
Although I do not know what God has planned for my future, I do know that He has me. If you are going through something similar, I would encourage you to choose to take this time to let God establish who you are as an individual. Accept that He will bring someone into your life at the right time. Or not. Part of trusting God’s plan for your life is being content with being single, (deep breath) forever. Wow, that was daunting to write, and I can imagine it was just as daunting to read. Let’s reflect on that for a second.
You may be thinking: “Tallie, God created man and woman to have companionship. He created me with a desire to love and serve a husband/wife, so why do I have to be okay with being single forever? I thought we were supposed to be fighting loneliness, not embracing it?” Hear me on this! Being content with being a single person is different from not desiring a spouse and it does not mean that you are content with being lonely.
I met a girl the other day who in telling me about herself and said something along these lines; “There isn’t a man in my life currently, but I am okay with that for now.” Normally I wouldn’t have thought twice about this statement, because I have heard it so many times; I’ve even used it myself. But for once, I let myself truly hear what she was saying. She was putting a condition on God. For now, she is content with being single, but at what point is she “not okay” with it?
Let me make myself clear. Marriage is a beautiful blessing from God and it should be cherished and desired. However, it is not the only thing and should not be desired above a relationship with the Father (that is called idolatry). Just ask any married person. The focus should not be on, “Why haven’t I met my spouse yet?”, or “Why couldn’t they love me like I loved them?” but on what God has truly called you to. In Matthew 28, the LORD gives us this command: “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you”. If your focus is on that, then God will bless you in ways you would have never imagined on your own. Who knows, that blessing may be a husband or wife who loves you so much better than the person you thought you’d marry. The battle with the loneliness of the Devil is a daily one; it is not going to be easy but it will get easier the more you fight it. The LORD ends the great commission with a little encouragement that I would like to leave you with as well.
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”