After losing this piece twice by trying to directly post it to Facebook, I have decided to press through and post it as my blog post for today.
It relates to the Christmas story, so I am going to run with it 🙂
I bet Mary & Joseph felt very lonely in their separate situations before getting married.
Its not every day you see an angel who gives you remarkable news.
Notice the angel didn’t appear to both of them together about the coming of Jesus, but individually.
They weren’t alone, for God was with them through it all, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t feel lonely along the way.
I have decided to go public about my previously private struggle with loneliness.
This week, I have realized I also struggle with SAD. This is the third winter I have felt blue, which doesn’t help my lonely feelings other than to amp them up.
There, i said it.
This morning, I felt like a freight truck of obvious collided with me as I read the article I have linked below:
I can relate to entering a full room and feeling alone. Set aside, like I don’t belong.
Then I hear the whispers of truth combat the lies the enemy has planted, like land mines waiting for the right pressure to ignite.
I am wanted.
I am set apart, not set aside.
I have been lovingly handcrafted with care.
I am irreplaceable, unique, one of a kind.
There will never be another me.
I have a purpose that only I can fulfill.
God is with me.
24/7, I am in his gaze and on His heart.
Loneliness is an emotion, more like a side effect that may come with a job, or particular situation.
Purpose is a fact. Recorded for you to be able to revisit as needed.
How can we tell which of the people we know or meet are struggling with loneliness, feeling unwanted?
We can’t always tell. Many of us hide our struggle away, because we fear the rejection that could come if we admit it out loud.
And we can’t always hear God say who is struggling in our hustle and bustle, because the reality is we aren’t always listening at the right moment.
There are three key things you can do with everyone you meet which can help, and make you appear approachable:
1. Make eye contact.
3. Share a kind word, encourage them if you can.
Spending time in the Word helps steady me, as does getting enough rest, and regular time with my support team.
Spending time in the world can heighten my struggle, so I try to limit how much I do in a day, to try and maintain my perspective, especially in the winter.
Christmas can be a time of heightened emotions. The extra weight of expectation can weigh heavily upon us as we try to get more done in the same amount of time, preparing for the holidays.
If you struggle with loneliness or being unwanted, this can make you question why. Why bother?
The Christmas story gives a beautiful example of why God can down to be with us.
Its actually the highlight of the story to me, because it meets me exactly where I am at.
When the angels invited the shepherds to the birth of their King.
Did you know shepherding is one of the loneliest and lowliest jobs of the day? Shepherds were the outcasts, pretty much one step above lepers. They were sent out to live with their flocks, a lonely job, especially if there was only enough flock for one.
God purposefully invited the lowliest to sit at the feet of the Mightiest, and worship Him.
Not only that, but their invitation was mind-blowingly amazingly special. A whole choir of angels singing His praises, and the invitation to join them in welcoming their King.
We have all been invited.
Some times, we need to be reminded of our invitation.
Reminded of the truth:
God didn’t come for only those who have it all together.
He chose the humble to parent His son, a virgin betrothed to a carpenter, from a small town.
He shared the good news first with outcasts & outsiders before the insiders were notified.
The only fanfare in His arrival?
The spectacular display of angelic voices- seen only by the shepherds and their flocks. Yet God didn’t see that as a waste, rather a special invitation it would be hard to ignore.
Our position, our emotion, our standing- none of that can disqualify us from our invitation…
All are invited to worship the King this Christmas:
May you too find hope in His Presence this Advent, and may He rekindle your joy at His arrival.
His purpose for coming to earth?
For all to feel welcome.
Come to the manger.
Come, let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.
God with us.