All The Lonely People
Today, for the first time, I am featuring a guest writer at Getting Down With Jesus. Please welcome, David of Red Letter Believers.
David is a terrific writer whose words always compel me to consider how I’m living out my high calling in all areas of life — not just in the pew on Sunday morning. I came across David about two years ago through the High Calling Blogs network of writers. And I’m honored to host him here today.
Today, David and I are trading guest posts. We are each sharing our thoughts on loneliness at one another’s blogs. You can find my post over at Red Letter Believers. But first, sit a spell here and read David’s thoughtful insights that challenge and encourage.
“All the lonely people, where do they all belong?”
Four decades ago the Beatles sang the song “Eleanor Rigby.” It punctured the heart of a generation that was desperately looking for some sort of meaning and purpose.
Since the release of that song, I’ve seen satellite television on demand, a cell phone in every hand, and social networking for the masses.
Unlimited ways of communicating beckon us, and still we are no less lonely. Amazingly, in a world of endless entertainment, active lives and bustling streets, men and women are still be isolated, empty and alone.
“Eleanor” is more than a simple analogy; she has morphed into a picture of modern society. She, Father MacKenzie, and all the other lonely people are my friends, my coworkers, my neighbors. They are me.
This week I began looking for the lonely. And they are everywhere. I began a bold, one-man outreach mission. Could I reach them?
There is the man who lives next store, who is from another country. No friends. No family. I knocked on his door and we shared a glass of tea on his front porch. Did I see a gleam in his eye?
An older man who works in the same building has no relationships outside of work from what I can tell. He punches in. He punches out. He goes home. He was surprised – and delighted that we had lunch.
There was a man in the alley behind my workplace. Wrapped in a dirty blanket, he had a hollow look of desperation. Rejected, addicted, sad. I squatted down. I asked him if I could help, asked if I could pray. He nodded and thanked me.
A woman in the store, stooped from the ravages of bones without substance, pushed her cart. I didn’t know her story. But I offered to help her with the tomatoes on the top row. I smiled at her. Called her maam. Asked if she would cook me soup. She beamed at me.
All the lonely people.
The amazing thing about this week, is that I realized that I too, was lonely.
But by reaching out, I found my own ache filled. I have a God who tells me, “You are mine, and I am yours.”
“Be filled my son. Be filled.”
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wow…..this was beautifully written. Bravo Bravo!
oddly enough….I was doing a little research today on sparrows for my blog and it was brought to my attention that when a sparrow noted alone…..it was the symbol of loneliness. And then I started to think about how even though I am surrounded by my family and friends at all times, I cannot help but feel lonely myself as I struggle with certain issues I am facing.
I find such encouragement in what you set out to do/accomplish with your priceless visits/interactions with those people this past week. It looks like you might have been blessed even more than them.
Way to go!
What a lovely post.
It is amazing that it seems we're lonelier than ever, even with all our techie connections. It's so heart nourishing to communicate face to face. To let others know we see them, to invite them into our lives.
Thanks David. It doesn't take much and you're so right, our needs are fulfilled in the same acts of kindness and love. Beautiful.
You speak much truth, David. I am grateful to the Lord for all the times I've started to plan a pity party, and He thwarted my intent by diverting my attention to someone else who needed love.
this was awesome. i love reading david's writings as well and am so glad that ya'll swapped blogs today! that is a really neat idea.
love you jennifer,
I like this idea of sharing guest posts. What a great way to get to know more people.
All the lonely people, where do they all belong? In the hands of God…through which His Love will flow through the many hands, on earth.
Beautiful posts…both of them.
Isn't that just like God? He places a burden on our hearts to help others, and in the process we find it helps us most of all.
I applaud your efforts David. Too often we get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of this world that we simply forget to really look at those around us.
What a great testimony. What a great way to be the arms of Jesus to comfort, and the hands of Jesus to help.
Oh my gosh David, this is incredible! I am wowed, both by your writing and your week of reaching out. Each of your stories inspired and amazed me. Thank you for this!!!
And thank you, Jennifer, for hosting David today. He's a gem!
This was a beautifully written truth…when we step out in faith to do the Lord's calling…He gives back immeasurably more than we give out…
What fun this has been to swap blogs with each other.
The people who read Jennifer's GDWJ blog are intrigued by her profound expressions of the every day world around them and I'm honored that she would share her space and her friends.
Wow, David! I'm so impressed that you acted on this in such simple but tangible ways. How many of us are just waiting for someone to phone, knock on the door, or reach out in some small way? What a gift you are! And what a gift this post is, reminding how little it takes to make a big impact on someone's life. I'll be this day is the start of many ongoing stories in your life, in the lives of each person you touched that day, and in our lives, your readers, who will be inspired to do the same.
Also, I love that the theme of loneliness ties in with this community-writing idea, sharing space on the World Wide Web. It's virtual hospitality, and it's a beautiful thing.
What a blessing! Came over from "A Defined Life" and am so glad I did. This was so profound!
What a great "swap"–I haven't met David, so this was wonderful. Intentional attempts to impact others' lives–brings conviction to my soul, my busy-ness versus taking the time to stop, even for just a cup of tea.
Couldn't help but notice…
If you are both writing on loneliness, then I guess, neither of you is alone. And you make me feel in your company.
You inspire, David. Thanks for sharing this reminder to look for the lonely people. And for having the courage to step closer to them.
This was an awesome post! Thanks so much for sharing that outpouring of faith in action. I'm encouraged.