I have been asked several times of late how the Mom in Newtown, Connecticut found herself so isolated. Did she deliberately disconnect? Was she protecting her son? Did she not ask for help? Given that she is gone we will never know the answers to many of these questions.
But I have to acknowledge that sadly, I understand how she could become isolated.
I am a very social creature who seeks out and wants connection. I reach out to friends, remember birthdays, send love notes, send notes of encouragement, etc.
I even ask for help when I feel we need it.
So how is it that despite asking there is little help that actually happens?
Honestly, I don’t get it. It grieves me. I don’t know what more I could do to make our family needs known. What does it take to be heard? Truly heard?
Days turn into weeks. Weeks turn into months. Months turn into years.
People are busy. They are engaged in their own lives and ministries. They have their own priorities. Good priorities. Important priorities. Priorities I would support also.
And in the words of an old friend who I will never forget, “We know that when push comes to shove, God will meet your needs.” This is true, of course. But it is true of all of us. God will meet our needs. But He wants us to be in community. He created us to be connected.
So this morning I awoke with an ache of loneliness. Yes, even I, the one who founded this community for connection, feel lonely. Why do you think I am so aware of the need for this ministry?
What am I called to do? I am called to continue to share transparently, even when people don’t respond. This is obedience to Christ. It is tempting to stop sharing. To crawl into a cave and pretend not to need others. But that is not true.
And what do I do when I ask for help and it does not come? How do I respond then? I pour out my heart to God. I weep. I thank Him for His presence. I remember Jesus experienced the most raw, raging, gaping loneliness man has ever experienced. He went to the cross and became sin on my behalf. And when He did, God turned His back on Him.
Unimaginable. Unfathomable. When all others fail I have the Father. I can’t imagine Jesus’ suffering to not have Him either.
He is my sustaining grace when I am lonely. When I long for someone to understand the daily journey. When I long for someone to reach out to my son, I ask, I appeal, and it doesn’t happen. My heart breaks. My soul grieves. How must I respond? I must forgive even if they do not realize their need for forgiveness. Because I need to forgive them. If I don’t the enemy will use it to stir bitterness in my heart. I refuse that outcome. I reject it completely.
So today, if you are feeling lonely, disconnected, know I hear your heart. I see you. And more important, the Father sees you. He knows your life. He sees your loneliness. He can be trusted. Remember with me this sweet word from I Peter 4:19: “Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.”
You are loved and prayed for today.