Loneliness is the biggest lie you’ve ever been told. Let me back up and tell you when I realized this.
For the last year I worked as a children’s ministry
intern for my home church New River Fellowship in Weatherford, Texas. Like any job, there were times I hated and loved it. But as my time there came to an end, I realized how much I absolutely loved what I did. And not just because I love kids and kids ministry, but because of the people I was surrounded by. I love everyone on that staff with all of my heart. During my last week of work, I was sitting in my bosses office with another intern (what up Joshie) just goofing around for a minute when the room is bombarded by the staff singing “for she’s a jolly good Ana!” They brought my favorite brownies from Yesterday’s (great local sandwiches) and celebrated my time spent on staff at my church.
Not only was the sweetness of that moment overwhelming for this fairly emotional girl, my senior pastor asked me what everyone could be praying for me in this next big journey. Lately, I haven’t known how to answer that question; when someone asks me what I need. But this time I knew exactly what fear was festering in my heart. Loneliness. And not that I was even feeling lonely at that moment, I was afraid of a feeling I hadn’t even had yet! (So funny how we anticipate and worry about tomorrow when the Lord clearly tells us in Matthew not to worry about tomorrow for tomorrow has enough worries of its own.) Well, teary eyed and voice shaking a little, I let my fear known to this awesome group of people who were so willing to hear my heart and love on me. Sweet prayers were said. Hugs were had. That was definitely one of my favorite memories from my job.
Fast forward to that Sunday. My last Sunday with my favorite little kids; some of which I have watched grow from kindergarten to the second grade. I’ve been with several of these kids for a few years, some for just this year, and every one of them holds a special place in my heart. During everyone service my lovely friend and boss Jimren had all my buddies gather around me and stretch their arms as they prayed for my journey.
And throughout that week I had so many casual occasions where friends and family just decided they needed to pray over me and this new chapter.
DANG am I blessed with an amazing community of people in my life or what?
No fast forward to the Sunday I left for London. Yuck.
My flight to London was dreadful. The Boston airport was a pain for switching terminals and almost had me missing my flight. I was starving by the time I managed to make it onto my plane. And I had a headache. I had 6 hours to go with no idea if I was getting food and no ibuprofen or Advil. Luckily, food was provided (Jesus loves me, this I know). But the headache persisted. And although I was on a red eye that would put me in London at 5 in the morning, I could not manage to fall asleep! My headache ended up one of those I-wanna-puke-this-hurts-so-bad-headaches. So let me whine for a second and say that I was a tad miserable for the majority of that flight. In true stress-filled nature, I had several breakdowns in the bathroom and in my seat. I would start crying cause I felt miserable and every lie of loneliness would rush right at me; “What do you think you’re doing? You can’t do this. This is way too long. You’re going to hate it. This was a terrible idea and now you’re stuck here.”
Don’t you hate that voice? It sucks. And it’s a freaking liar.
Of course I didn’t realize that right then. For the next few hours I totally let that voice control how I felt.
Once I got off of the plane, got through customs, filled out paperwork for my lost luggage(yeah, that happened), made my way on the Tube, and FINALLY to Kings Cross; I forgot every awful feeling of loneliness and inadequacy.
I stared in awe at the area of Kings Cross and at every opportunity the Lord had just thrown at my fingertips. I was elated with joy and excitement at what the next four months had to offer.
But more than that I realized I am not alone. Not even close.
God was using every encouraging moment I experienced before I left to remind me that I am never alone. Not just because I have so many awesome people who love and support me. He was reminding me of the power of prayer and that He is never far away.
He’s had a hand in everything that goes on in my life. And no matter what the situation, he will made good of it. Paul tells us in Romans 8:28 “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who are called according to His purpose.” In all things God works for your good. Because in him, you have purpose. And if God makes good/can make good of every situation you’re in, good or bad, whether you realize it or not, you are not alone. He is looking out for you and has a plan beyond your biggest dreams.
There is nowhere you can go where he will not follow you. There is nowhere you can run where he isn’t already waiting for you at the finish line. You are never alone. Loneliness does not exist when you have given your heart to Christ.
We all know this. But there are moments where we all need that reminder that we truly are never ever alone.
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age”