“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” – Isaiah 41:10
Loneliness was the first thing that God named not good. Genesis 2:18 says, “Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.” God recognized Adam’s need for contact with another human being — a need God had built into him.
Loneliness is not a unique concept. Most people know and are known by hundreds of people. And yet they can feel isolated. While that seems counterintuitive, a lack of meaningful relationships can often result in loneliness. Shallow relationships do not cure loneliness. Because in shallow relationships, the conversations rarely go beyond the story of the day, sports, weather and business. In shallow relationships, people never talk about their fears and their failures. If you are content with shallow relationships, you will never have people who listen and share far more deeply.
Each one of us was created for community, for the kind of companionship that touches our deep need to know and be known. Where people will help each other in their daily walk with God. We were made for relationship. Scripture promises that we are never alone. God has said, “Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6) That is an incredible promise that we should never take for granted. But while we need God, we also need one another.
So, how are your friendships? Are they fulfilling? Honestly? If not, I want to challenge you to take a few moments and evaluate the quality of the relationships. Do we have the kind of relationships that will enable us to grow as followers of Jesus. Because at the end of the day, when we grow in our relationships with others, we’re growing in relationship with God. The best way to do that is in a small group. If you’re not in a small group, consider getting into one or starting one.
In a small group we can be a part of what God has intended for us all along: deeply committed relationships of unconditional love, which mirror His love for us.
- Think of five of the closest relationships in your life right now. How do you feel like they “mirror” God’s love to you? In those same relationships how do you “mirror” God’s love to them?
- What can you do to improve one relationship this week?