I’m not talking about being single in this post. (Although I guess that might be kind of part of it.)
I’m actually talking about living alone. Being physically alone.
That’s where I am now. And it sucks, so I decided to write about it. Sometimes that makes me feel better, but more than that, I want to share encouragement with anyone else who might feel something like what I’m feeling now.
I’ll preface the rest of the post by saying that I’m a people-person. I also [probably] have fear-of-abandonment issues.
Everyone who knows me, knows that I love being with others, even if we’re not doing anything in particular. Just proximity with other humans who know and care that I exist is the best feeling to me.
Right now, I’m in my house entirely by myself.
Many people my age would be rejoicing, but I’m usually crying. I legitimately cannot hold back tears when I think about my parents being away.
My brother moved out of the house last January and he’s 26 now so it wasn’t as if he rebelliously wanted to leave our family or something devastating like that; it was just time for him to move out on his own.
When he left, I cried – even though I wasn’t living at home at the time and no matter what, he wasn’t leaving me alone. But thinking of him going made me sad. Now, even though I’m used to him not being in the house, I can’t wrap my head around his lifestyle. If I try to picture myself in his place, I actually just can’t. He lives in an apartment building, alone, and he doesn’t know any of his neighbors or anything like that.
I can’t imagine living that way.
Right now, my parent have gone on vacation and when I came home from church this evening, I unlocked the door to let myself in and the tears came, unbidden, before I’d closed the door behind me.
I walked into a dark and empty house. No one said “hi,” no one cared, not even my dog is home to bark and jump and wag her tail excitedly.
This isn’t the life for me.
But now that I’ve described what, to me, is one of the worst situations in life, let me tell you what is encouraging me as I write this.
His presence, His spirit, His love.
As I was crying I kept telling myself to stop, to get it together. I told myself that I couldn’t do that every time I crossed the threshold.
That wasn’t helping me. I kept crying.
So I prayed instead. It was raw and desperate but it worked.
I called out loud, “God, make me feel your presence. Press in on me so that even though you aren’t physically walking beside me, I will feel and know that you are with me. God, come into this place.” I kept repeating things like that and just as I hadn’t known I was going to cry, I didn’t need to make myself stop… I just did.
All of a sudden, there is a warmth around my shoulders and I’m able to smile, laugh and even though I know there are still no people – or pets – in my house, I don’t feel alone. It’s a very strange feeling, knowing I’m physically alone, knowing I’m never truly alone but actually feeling that truth.
It’s one thing to say you believe something, it’s entirely different to experience the undeniable truth of God’s promises. He said He would never leave me, and while I believe it before, now I’m feeling it.
That’s incredible and encouraging and all of a sudden, the next three weeks don’t seem so bad. I’ll still have times of loneliness and sadness, and I’ll cry some more too, but I can always think back to this evening and call out to God again and trust that He will answer.
He does press in on you when you ask Him to.
He does show Himself to you call for Him.
Dads are great. Moms too. Having parents who love you and want the best for you, who provide for you and care for you is an incredible gift.
It’s even better to be a cherished son or daughter of a king. I am loved by the Creator of the Universe.
And so are you.
This is the encouragement I want to extend to you, whoever you are.
God loves you.
It’s a real love.
No matter what your situation is like, no matter what kinds of relationships you have with anyone, parents, siblings, friends, extended family, significant others, whoever and whatever the nature of any of your relationships, a relationship with the one true God is so much better. He is so perfect. He provides more than enough.
Walking in that truth changes everything.
Before today, and especially earlier today as my parents rolled their suitcases out the door, tears were streaming down my face non-stop and I had no idea what kind of month I was about to have. Nothing made me feel like I’d get through the time alone.
Now I have worship music playing on YouTube, I have a comforting warmth around my shoulders – yes, it is a physical warmth and light pressure on my shoulders – and I’m smiling! I’m writing about the Creator of the Universe as my best friend and I’m joyful. In His presence, there is true peace.
Anyway, some of you might think I’m crazy, but that doesn’t change the fact that I’m feeling God changing my life right now. It might even seem small and insignificant but God meets us where we need to be met. He steps in when we come to the end of ourselves. If I’d been praying earnestly for comfort earlier, maybe my month wouldn’t have seemed so horrible. But I needed to get to a place of desperation before I cried out and called to my Father.
He loves me.
And He loves you too.
When you need Him, He’s there. So call on Him.