Posted by: mikenicholsblog | November 25, 2012

all alone

Years ago, a man who I was helping with his marriage gave me a solemn, but telling description of it.  His words were … It’s seventy-two degrees on the porch and thirty degrees in the house.  He felt all alone in his own home.  When our twenty year-old daughter headed to New York City for college, she didn’t know a soul.  She was all alone in a sea of humanity (and rats in the dorm).  And it has been almost three years since a close friend of mine attended a meeting of like-minded professionals.  During the meeting, he shared the pain of his wife passing away just months before.  The other attendees gave lip service to caring, and then went on with their prescribed meeting.  My friend was all alone in a meeting with people he was convinced would really care about his pain. I could go on and on about those overwhelming emotions that capture us when we feel all alone, but I believe you understand my point.

Over the past week, I have been reading and studying about a “man after God’s own heart.” You know him as David. His life was filled with an inordinate amount of peaks and valleys. My reading has given me a fresh look at this man’s life – strengths and weaknesses alike. After his slaying of Goliath and the fanfare that ensued, his life eventually took a painful turn. For a long season, he was on the run from King Saul. His outlaw life placed him in a cave for a time, during which he wrote Psalm 142. Saul was intent on taking David’s life when the words were penned. There is no doubt he was in danger, overwhelmed and feeling abandoned. Words from this marvelous Psalm speak to his trust, and give hope to all Christ followers.  

Psalm 142:3-5 (NLT)
When I am overwhelmed,
 you alone know the way I should turn.
Wherever I go,
my enemies have set traps for me.  I look for someone to come and help me, but no one gives me a passing thought! No one will help me; no one cares a bit what happens to me. Then I pray to you, O Lord.  I say, “You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life.

David was overwhelmed, and conceded that he felt that no one really cared a bit about what happened to him. When is the last time you had that all alone feeling? Have you ever felt like no one really gave much thought to what you were experiencing? Sure, you weren’t running from enemies, but the feelings of aloneness still overwhelmed you. We all know what it is like to feel alone at home, in a crowd or with people we thought cared about us, but really didn’t. The key is how we respond to those inevitable times when our emotions of being all alone dim our view of God.

In David’s prison of a cave, we see his pain caused by being overwhelmed bubble to the surface. It’s interesting that we also view a supreme confidence in his Lord. He said; you alone know the way I should turn. He later prayed: You are my place of refuge. You are all I really want in life. He knew God had an answer for his aloneness, affirmed that God was his refuge and then declared that his desire in life was God. His faith and confidence in Jehovah conquered his feelings of abandonment in the cave.

You and I will have feelings of being all alone … even in a room full of people. There will be times when we feel no one understands or cares, or gives our pain a passing thought. But there is Someone who cares! He never misses a moment of your life, and if you are in Christ, you are never all alone in your struggle. Your challenge and mine is this — Will we make Him our refuge for every day, and desire His plan for us above all else? If we do, faith will conquer our feelings, and we will know that we are never all alone.

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