Feeling Lonely On Christmas? I’m With You.

Loneliness strikes singles living in cities very hard. Know a single far from home? You simply must invite them to Christmas dinner- and buy them a GREAT gift too!

I know that Christmas can be a sad and stressful time for many people. I don’t want to be a careless or unfeeling Christian this time of year. Many of you are hurting because of broken families, injured relationships, sickness, death and worse of all, out and out loneliness. I once read a book called, “The Unbearable Lightness of Being.” It is one of the only books that dealt so well with the topic of modern day loneliness. There was a character in the book that seemed to have everything. She was brilliant, successful, witty, beautiful and desirable. But she had no reason to stay or leave a place. Nothing weighed her down. No annoying family responsibilities, no endless family squabbles, no horrible job to complain about, no children to whom she needed to sacrifice. No ties to tether her to the ground- she could just as easily move here or move there. People often told her they were jealous of her ability to live abroad or in any beautiful nook in the world.

She hadn’t intended for her life to work out that way- it just did. Her wit & charm were weapons to cover the pain lest anyone should know that she was the poorest of them all- the most destitute. Holidays were the worst time of all- everyone had reasons to be pulled this way and that- no one had time to spend with her. All the men around her were frightened of her beauty, thinking she was too good for them, not knowing her desperate need for love and on the holidays, even her beauty couldn’t lure them from their lives full of annoying burdens. She refused to throw herself at them sexually. So, she suffered terribly.

Loneliness is a terrible, terrible thing. Of all the evils satan has concocted, loneliness is the worst. Once, I lived in San Francisco. I was making so much money as a management consultant that I never bothered balancing my check book. It’s true! I lived in a beautiful high-rise apartment right on the water, I ate out every night in a little French restaurant next to my building. The reason I did that was because being in my apartment was hell. I would stand there in the evenings, completely and deafeningly silent, and look across at all the apartment buildings. The water and boats sparkled beautifully as the sun set. But I would look and see all the little people in their bubbles, walking around, alone too. I wondered, “Are you perishing too? Do you wish for death as much as I do? Would you think I am insane if I knocked on your door and told you I just needed to talk to another human being? Would you be relieved or would you just think I was the biggest loser?”

All the little fish swimming around, alone. It wasn’t right. It couldn’t be right. This was not intended by God. We are not intended to be separate from one another, separate from Him. We are meant to be jolly together, rejoicing with one another in mutual friendship, laughter, song and joy! What we do in life is imprisonment. Wealthy imprisonment.

Loneliness is a curse. I remember well the torturous holidays. All of you who are suffering as you read this, I am with you. My heart is with you. I have lived it and do not speak it lightly. I know the vastness and hopelessness of that desert. I have heard God’s complete silence as well. But I am here now, having crossed that terrible, cold, place to tell you that God has not forgotten you any more than he forgot me. Because, look at me now. It was in that San Francisco apartment that I once wanted to take my life. I sat in my one and only chair (imagine that! I bought ONE chair for my apartment! Such was the loneliness of my life) and my whole chest cried out in passion to God. I told him that I was at my end! I couldn’t take it anymore. He needed to deliver me or I would die. I just told him my deepest desire: a husband, children, a home and a loving family to call my own. I felt the Holy Spirit move inside of me and I simply knew he had heard. He was still silent way back then because it was before I had received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. But I want you to know that many years (yes, it took years) later, God gave me every thing my heart desired. And more.

Sometimes, God makes us endure long times of suffering- not because he enjoys it but because he is preparing us for a special work. He was preparing me for THIS work, right here. He was preparing me to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit, which I never would have been ready to receive without this painful time and all that it had taught me. Because of that time, and because of God’s miraculous delivery, I can witness to you that God HEARS, God LOVES and God never forgets a single one of us- even when we are trapped in a little bubble and no one in the entire world cares if we live or die. HE cares.

Don’t love heart, my loves. God sees you clearly. You are not forgotten this holiday season. I see you. God sees you. Jesus sees you. The Holy Spirit sees you. Put your whole faith in God. Pray to him and tell him your hearts desire. Read your Bible, go to church, love God with all your heart, mind and soul and you will FIND what you most need. After I conclude this essay, I will pray for all of you who are lonely out there. God bless you and keep you. I love you, Susan

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No elder should be left lonely. If you know an elder, you must include them this Christmas. You must.
No elder should be left lonely. If you know an elder, invite them to Christmas dinner or bring it to them- and have the kids make them something cute!
Lonely Woman in Bedroom --- Image by © Josef Lindau/Corbis
Loneliness can strike singles in cities very hard.  If you know a single living far from home, invite them to Christmas dinner- and buy them a really nice gift too!  They will love you for it!

9 comments

  1. Hi Susan, I can’t remember how I stumbled across your blogs, maybe God led me there, maybe He hasn’t given up on me. He called me many times when I was young and I always pushed Him away. I am 62 now and haven’t heard His voice for more than 40 years. Kidded myself that I was a Christian but have recently come to the awful realisation that I am not and am bound for eternity in Hell. I feel so desperately alone, lost and helpless, I keep pleading for Him to call me once again, but fear I have crossed the line. If He tells you not to pray for me then I guess I am finished! I never really understood the expression “without Christ and without hope”but now I feel it in the depth of my being! Thanks for listening, Ian.

    • Hello Ian, I have great news for you, my friend. No one is hopeless. No one. And if you came here to me asking for prayer, then you are like the thief on the cross next to Jesus when he was being crucified. Do you remember? He was on his deathbed. He hadn’t done a good thing his whole life. He admitted to being a murderer who deserved the death penalty. All he did was defend Jesus from the other thief’s mockery and then turn to Christ and ask him to remember him in heaven. He didn’t even ask to be saved- probably because he didn’t feel worthy to go to heaven. But Jesus, with his magnificent heart, full of love and grace, did all the work for him. Jesus, even in his pain and suffering, reached out to the thief and felt it was enough. What the thief gave was enough. The thief’s small comment and attitude showed 1) that he was sorry for what he had done in his life 2) knew that Jesus was the Son of God 3) understood that Jesus had the power to remember him and lastly, had incredible humility. Even though the man didn’t have the ability to articulate anything clearly, all those things were clear to Jesus. Jesus is that kind. He is that generous. He is the master of the heart, Ian. Nothing passes his notice.

      Your contrite and yearning heart does not escape his notice either. Ian. Why do you think God, in all his infinite wisdom, put the story of the thief in the Bible? He put him there to 1) thwart all the supposed wise men of this world who would attempt to take control of Jesus’ salvation by putting all this complex doctrine, priesthood and ritual around it and 2) to give us all GREAT HOPE in the purest simplicity of salvation and the sweet love and grace of our Master.

      Ian, it doesn’t take a lot to be saved. You just have to 1) be sorry for your sins. You sound very sorry for your sins. That is the most important thing 2) Believe in God, the Father. You clearly believe in God. 2) Believe that God sent his Son, Jesus Christ, to save mankind from his sins, which have already condemned us to both physical and eternal death. You clearly believe that mankind is doomed to death because of our sins and that Jesus has the power of salvation. 3) Lastly, you simply need to ASK Jesus to forgive your sins and to save you from death. 4) then, OBEY Jesus and God in all they have commanded you. Or, I should say, do your best. We do this by reading the Bible, prayer and building our relationship with God and Christ throughout the rest of our lives. This is to please both God and ourselves. We have a mission once we become bond servants of the Lord. We have the Great Commission: to take the Word to the ends of the Earth. We await the return of Christ in eager anticipation. Never think that #4 is HOW you are saved, however. #4 is simply the RESULT of being saved. We do this in love of our Lord. That is all.

      After we are saved, we still sin. We just come back in repentance again and again. This is the cross we bear until we are made perfect with Christ. Death is no longer frightening- it is reward because this cross of sin will finally be removed. Once we are remade, we will not sin anymore. Thank God!

      Please don’t feel that you are hopeless. And of course I will pray for you, Ian. But it isn’t my prayer that will save you. It’s Jesus’ own love that will. So go ahead and just ask him. And then, just rest and relax and trust in him. Like the thief, you WILL see Jesus soon.

  2. susan I am so lonely. It has been 4 yrs. since Cory died & now Papa has Alzheimers . I have become so isolated & all my friends have left me & I have no family. Please pray for me Susan!! God Bless you & Merry Christmas. Love, Hope

    • Oh, Hope! My heart flies to you! I wish I could come over right now and comfort you. You are a good daughter to care for your father when he is sick. What a difficult illness for him to have while you struggle with loneliness! Be strong, Hope. Sometimes, just knowing that life is short is what keeps me going. When I was younger, I was uncomfortable that God shortened mankind’s lifespan. I wondered to myself, “Why would God punish us like that?” Then, later, I read in Revelation that God would need to shorten ‘the days’ or else no one would be able to survive the times of tribulation. And that seemed as if he was doing it out of mercy. Now, I realize that even the first time he did it was out of mercy. He must have needed us to live longer at the beginning for some reason- perhaps to populate the world quicker? Who knows? But to live forever is a curse! Who wants that? The only people who would crave that are evil people who don’t care about anyone but themselves. It is wealthy people who only serve themselves. Those who only take and never give. Those who close their eyes to human suffering. Those who can party when so many starve and never feel a bit of concern. Those who can have decrepit sex and never feel ashamed the next day. Those are the only ones who would wish to live longer, I think. Or maybe not. Those are the Hollywood crowd and all they do is take drugs to take away their misery and then ultimately kill themselves. So… not even they want to live so long.

      This life is a trial. It’s only bearable when we serve Christ. His is the ONLY burden that is light. Without his yoke, all other yokes are unbearable. I keep this in mind when I suffer. We are only here for a while, Hope. And someday, soon, our duty will come to an end. And I always have hope that God loves us so much that he will see us to a new place before our death. Even when it seems that we can’t bear our burden for one minute more, somehow, someway, he will suddenly change things around in one moment and instantly we are in a new Springtime in our lives! He has done this several times in my life. I know he will do this for you too. He will do this soon for you. Just wait on the Lord. He has not forgotten you, Hope.

      I did pray for you before I wrote. I know that God already is lovingly planning out your life in a perfect way, but I asked him to make it a bit easier for our understanding. To life your burdens and make them lighter. To have one of your family suddenly call or visit. My heart is with you, Hope. Much love and many blessings… Susan

  3. I was struggling with tears when baking Christmas cookies and feeling ….lonely. Last year my boyfriend dumped me without any word of explanation, my son started his own life, for which i am very grateful, and now I am living alone in a flat with only a few contacts. I have been lonely for the most part of my life,as I brought up my son for 26 years completely on my own. In 2011 I thought I had met finally the man God meant for me,we spoke of belonging together by God´s grace, marrying and building life together, with us being over 50 years. But then, he vanished. That is now more than one year, still I cannot find courage and feel lonely. Your article has been a comfort by knowing there are others out there that hurt too. And somone praying for me. Thank you, Susan. Love and blessings, Susanne xxx

    • Dear Susanne, your comment moved me. I’m so sorry that you are hurting right now. I know exactly how you feel. Yes, there are definitely many others who feel as you do. Unfortunately, there are more people that suffer in this world than are happy, I think. But please don’t lose hope in God. If he could reach down and deliver me, he can deliver anyone. If you knew my whole story, you would understand that I am a product of a miracle. I true miracle. Depression alone should have killed me by now. But God took care of that too. I have been remade by His hand. He knows your suffering and sees everything you are going through. None of it is random; none of it is pointless. You aren’t lost, you aren’t forgotten- everything, everything you are going through has meaning and purpose. You just can’t see that now. There are some who think that suffering has no purpose- but they are quite wrong. I am certain it does. It shapes us and educates us. IF we refuse to give into sin and hatred and bitterness and jealousy- when we come out of the other end of it, we will be able to use what was evil to do great good to others. And that alone is redeeming. In fact, that is the WAY out of the loneliness and misery.

      The very best way out of loneliness and misery is to start helping other people, did you know that? It’s true. Start reaching out to other people – literally feed them, clothe them, give them blankets and gloves. You will be shocked at how this helps you. Turning the focus from inward to outward is a solution that many don’t realize. But this simple obedience to Christ’s commands to go out and spread the Word and to go out and help the poor is better than all the therapy in the world. Also, reading the Bible daily. This something I didn’t do when I was in the worst of times. I didn’t know it could help. No one told me! But remember, before you open your bible, you MUST pray first. You must pray like this: “Father, thank you for all that you have given me. I want to know your will for me. Please send me the Holy Spirit so that I can understand your Word right now. Amen” You must ASK for the Holy Spirit before reading the Word. without the Holy Spirit, the Word makes no sense. This is true. The Bible tells people this- but ironically, they need the Holy Spirit to know it! So, now you know. Do these things and you will feel a lifting of your misery. Please let me know how things are going with you throughout this next year. Also, if you ever need prayer. Susan

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