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Facing Our Loneliness, Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley
The Truth Network Radio
November 15, 2021 12:00 am

Facing Our Loneliness, Part 1

In Touch / Charles Stanley

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November 15, 2021 12:00 am

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Welcome to the In Touch Podcast with Charles Stanley for Monday, November fifteenth. Even with all the technology available today, do you still feel isolated? Believers in Jesus don't have to feel that way. Here's a biblical perspective on Facing Our Loneliness. Do you feel disconnected from other people? Do you feel like you don't have anyone to share something with, something deep in your heart? Do you feel isolated even when you're in a crowd? Do you feel like somehow you just really don't know how to love someone or to be loved by them? Do you feel you have this longing, deep, insatiable, hungering, thirsting desire to be attached in some way?

Do you feel like a stranger, right in the midst of people that most of whom maybe you know? If those things are true in your life, you're suffering from something. You're suffering from something that you probably did not even realize. And not only that, that suffering is having an effect upon your life in ways that you not even realize.

Well, what is it? Well, the problem is that you're lonely. There's nothing wrong with having lonely moments in life because we all do. But to be lonely, to have a life of loneliness is not the will of God.

It's not His plan. In fact, He said in the very first book of the Bible, it's not good for men and women to be alone. That is lonely. It does not mean that we should not have times when we are alone, but to live a lonely life.

I just described some of those feelings that a person has when they are lonely. And there are more people who are suffering from loneliness than realize they do. They know that something is missing, but they don't, can't tell you what it is. They look around and see physically everything's there, materially everything is there. And there's someone there, but they still feel disconnected. They still feel that there's something not quite there. They don't feel fulfilled.

They don't sense intimacy with anyone. There's something very important missing in life. So, let me remind you that God created you and me to have an intimate relationship with Him. The Bible says He created us to bring Him glory and honor. What brings Him more glory and honor than that you and I would live in an intimate, loving relationship with our Heavenly Father? That's why He created us.

So, God has something awesome in mind for His children. And loneliness does not fit into His plan. So, what I want to talk about in this message is facing out loneliness.

And I want you to turn, if you will, to Psalm twenty-five. And let me just simply say this, that no matter how lonely you may be, I want to say right in the beginning of this message, you can be delivered from it. You can overcome it. You can be victorious over it. You do not have to live a life that is lonely. Lonely moments at times, situations and circumstances that create loneliness.

Yes, but you don't have to live in it. So, look in this twenty-fifth Psalm and here's what He says. Who is the man who fears the Lord? He will instruct Him in the way He should choose. His soul shall abide in prosperity, and His descendants will inherit the land. The secret of the Lord is for those who fear Him, that is who obey Him.

And He will make them know His commandments, or His covenant. My eyes are continually toward the Lord, for He will pluck my feet out of the net. Turn to me and be gracious to me. Now listen, for I am lonely and afflicted.

The troubles of my heart are enlarged. Bring me out of my distresses. Look upon my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sin. Now you'll note He talks about being lonely and He also talks about sin pretty close together.

Oftentimes, they are very, very connected. Oftentimes, it is because of our sin that a person is lonely. So, what I'd like for us to do is I want us to define what loneliness is. What is loneliness?

And I'll repeat it so that you can jot it down. And I want you to think about this as I ask you to consider these questions. Think about what the whole issue of loneliness is about. Loneliness is a separation anxiety that's brought about in our life by feeling disconnected. That is, when we're disconnected from others, disconnected from God, there is this separation anxiety. There's an anxiety that goes on inside of us. Maybe we can't quite identify what it is.

You more than likely will think it's something else. Loneliness is very real. Loneliness is not only real, it is continually having an effect in a person's life who's living a lonely life. So, it's this separation anxiety that's feeling of being disconnected. Disconnected from what?

Usually disconnected from someone or disconnected from a group, but primarily disconnected from someone. If you've never trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, you are disconnected from God. You are disconnected from His Son, Jesus. You are disconnected from the things in life that truly, genuinely count. You do not have the ability to genuinely love and to be loved the way God intended for you to. Loneliness is a spiritual problem.

It can become a physical problem, a relational problem, all kind of problems, but it is a spiritual problem because it begins with feeling disconnected, alienated, ostracized, whatever you want to say about your relationship to God. So, I want you to think about where all this began. Where did it all begin?

It began in the Garden of Eden when man chose to disobey God and rebel against Him. When you choose to rebel against God, you alienate yourself. You separate yourself. Well, somebody says, well, but doesn't the Bible say that He says of all of us who will believe us, He'll never leave us nor forsake us?

Correct. So, He hasn't changed, but we change. And you know as well as I do, when you sin against God, you don't sense that oneness of fellowship. You don't sense that intimacy. And the tension is there and the stress is there and the separation and all the rest. God doesn't want us living that kind of life.

That's the way it began. But, people choose oftentimes, their lives separate from Him, and so they have to suffer the consequences as a result. Now, when we think about the nature of it, the feelings that a person has, the feeling of loneliness, why does that come from? For example, if there's a death of someone you love, whether it's your husband or wife or child or parent or a dear friend, that gives us a sense of loneliness. That doesn't maybe last a long time, but you see, some loneliness is for a moment and some is for a lifetime.

It depends upon how you respond to it. And so, death causes us to feel lonely and to feel that loneliness deeply. There's a feeling, for example, of condemnation of God. If a person feels condemned by God, then there's no way to have any peace and joy and contentment. And so, one of the primary reasons that people feel lonely is that they feel God's condemned them.

Why? They look back in their past and they see sin in their life and they say, Well, I know, I've asked God to forgive me. Did He forgive you? Yes, He did.

And then usually following yes, He did is but. But what? But I don't feel like it. And so, as long as you feel condemned by God, you're going to feel lonely.

Why? Because, listen, your Creator created you for Himself and a place in your life for Him that nothing else, no one else can ever fulfill. Then there's the whole feeling that many people have, Well, I'm unworthy.

I'm unfit. I'm unwanted. You know, I don't have any value. When people have a very, very poor self-image, they're lonely people. Because what they feel is this, Nobody wants me. Nobody likes me. Nobody wants to be my friend. Nobody wants to invite me. Nobody wants me a part of their life.

And it's this absolutely continuous condemning of themselves. You're talking about loneliness. That creates awesome loneliness. And listen, it doesn't stop with a feeling, I'm here to tell you. It will affect your life.

It will affect every single aspect of your life. Loneliness is a major issue. And there are millions of people around us. Who are very lonely. They don't know they're lonely.

But if you listen to them, you don't have to listen very long. And after a few moments, you'll find that it begins to trickle out in their conversations, in their relationships, the way they treat other people, the way they respond to people. They cannot love someone else. And they don't feel loved. Imagine this, going through your entire life and never feeling genuinely loved by anybody.

That has to be torment. And that can't do anything but create loneliness. God never intended that you and I would live our lives without feeling loved and the ability to love someone else.

But if you are genuinely lonely, it's going to be very difficult for you to love someone else until you're able to handle that, until you're able to deal with it. One of those feelings, for example, is this. When you have joy and you're excited about something and listen, you have nobody to share it with. Because life is all about sharing. It's all about relationships. And when people are lonely, they don't, they don't feel like they can, who wants to listen to them?

That's the way they feel. Who wants to listen to me? Who cares about what I care about? Well, people oftentimes do, but we don't give them the privilege of expressing it. And so, oftentimes a person will go through situations and circumstances in life, sometimes hard times, they don't have anybody to share it with. Listen, when you're going through the valley, everybody needs somebody to share their valley experiences with. When you're on the mountaintop, part of the, part of the joy of being on the mountain is having somebody to tell about it. And yet, people who are lonely don't feel they even want to because they feel they may be rejected.

They feel like nobody cares. And you see, it's like living in a cocoon. And life isn't what you want it to be.

It isn't what God planned for you. And there you are suffering silently. There are people all around us. There are many of you who are listening.

And you're saying, that's exactly the way I feel. I don't feel anybody cares. I don't have anything to say. I don't think anybody wants my relationship. What is it about me anybody would want?

What is it about me anybody could love? And you see, that's because you're lonely. And when you get lonely, it distorts your whole view. It distorts your view of yourself. It distorts your view of God. It distorts your view of other people.

You don't see them. In other words, it's hard for you to see that somebody could be excited about you. And when the Bible says that He rejoices over us, somebody says, Hey, wait a minute, there's nothing about me that God could rejoice over. That's because you don't see yourself the way God sees you. And I think there are many wonderful people who have great assets and abilities and talents and skills and oftentimes beautiful people. But their self-image is so poor and their loneliness has so overpowered them, it's very difficult for them to believe that anybody could want them, anybody could like them, anybody could want to be with them, anybody could want to be their friend.

Why? Because that's the way they feel. That's the damaging part of loneliness. Now we're talking about where it all started. Well, one of the places it starts is, for example, early in childhood, that a child comes along and they feel neglected by their parents or their parents don't care and they do neglect them. And sometimes it's not because their parents neglect them, it's because of the circumstance. And I can think in my own life that the first thing I remember in life, and I don't know why this is so pictured in my mind, it's like me standing off and looking at myself at that moment in life and I was sitting in the middle of the bed and I was by myself and I had an earache and I was crying. And so, because my father died when I was nine months of age, my mother had to sort of put me out and let other folks keep me and this lady kept me and that lady kept me and all these folks who kept me, I couldn't even name them all. And I lived in seventeen different places the first sixteen years of my life.

And it, evidence of insecurity naturally. And so, when I look back and think about that when I first started the school, my mother had to go to the, she worked in the text of the mill, so she had to go to work early in the morning and I had to get up and she taught me very early how to cook an egg and some bacon and piece of toast. And so, when I left to go to school, I left alone. When I came home, I was alone.

I can still see that big black long key we hid under the brick and I would put in the doorknob, I can still see that lock. And I would turn and think, I'm going to be by myself. I remember that. And so, I look back in those days and see how that affected my life. It affected my life in lots of ways.

It created great insecurity. It took me a while to believe that God really and truly loved me. It took me a while to be able to understand that God's love was more important than anyone else's love and that somehow, in spite of all that, that He loved me, no matter what I felt about myself.

And so, I said in the beginning and I want to say again, it isn't the fact that you go into these lonely times in your life, it's how you respond. So, by the grace and the goodness and the love and mercy of God, I turned to Him because He's all I had. And the fact that I had no one except my mom whom I loved dearly and she did all that she could, but she couldn't take the place of a father and she couldn't help the kind of life we had to start out with.

And then when I had a stepfather, I was like the Fifth Wheel or the third party, ostracized, not wanted, shut out, condemned, and you name it. In spite of all that, God had saved me early in life. And as a result, I turned to Him because He's all that I had. And He taught me in the midst of all that loneliness that I always had Him. And that's why one of the first things that I began to do after I was Savior is to memorize some favorite Scriptures.

And one of them was, I will never leave you nor forsake you. That was a basic anchor verse and my anchor verse for all of life is Proverbs three, five, and six. Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not to your own understanding.

In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path. That is, I had that assurance. And so, there are different reasons people are lonely. And so, somebody says, Well, do you feel sorry for yourself?

Absolutely not. I don't want nobody's pity. I'm just simply saying that there are reasons people grow up like that because God can deliver us and overcome that in a person's life.

The question is, how do you handle that? It begins with being reconciled to God your Creator through His Son Jesus Christ. That's the beginning. That means that God, because He loves you, and He does no matter how lonely you are, that God, because He loves you and He loves me, He sent His only begotten Son Jesus into the world to down the cross to pay for our sin dead in full so that you and I can be totally, completely forgiven of all of our sin. And in the process, that puts us in a right relationship with Him. Once that relationship is right through the confession, repentance of our sin, placing our trust in Jesus, once you do that, then the Holy Spirit comes into your life.

And what does He do? He begins to give guidance and direction. He will draw you out of that loneliness. He will enable you to be rescued from that, to come out from under that cloud, to get out of that shroud, to remove all of that off of you and help you to be able to walk in a way that you've wanted to walk for years in your life.

I don't care how old you are, you can be young, you can be old as the people would say. You can be delivered if you want to be. And that's my prayer for you. Thank you for listening to part one of Facing Our Loneliness. If you'd like to know more about Charles Stanley or In Touch Ministries, stop by This podcast is a presentation of In Touch Ministries, Atlanta, Georgia.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-07-22 21:37:29 / 2023-07-22 21:45:06 / 8

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