In a culture that prizes independence and self-reliance above all else, it’s no surprise that many of us feel alone.

Today, loneliness plagues our lives more than ever before as the pandemic has forced us to isolate and political divides have drawn us apart.

If you’re feeling lonely, you’re not alone.

When Jesus was sentenced to death on the cross, he felt isolated and afraid. He didn’t want to wait through the night alone, so he asked his friends to join him in a garden. They gathered in prayer and Jesus asked for support. But as the night pressed on, his friends fell asleep. Though Jesus was surrounded by people, he felt abandoned. If his friends had understood his pain, they would’ve fought to stay awake.

Suffering can be lonely. Sometimes, you may feel like no one understands what you’re going through, like the world has fallen asleep on your struggles. Jesus knew this feeling well.

After his nine hours on the cross, he cried out to ask God why he had been forsaken. In his anguish, he felt deserted, stripped of every connection including his connection with God.

Sometimes, loneliness has a purpose. It can be a trial that leads to greater things. Through the pandemic, we’ve isolated to protect ourselves and the people we love. Through political division, we’ve been forced to make positive change. Loneliness can urge us to make new connections, to reach for people we may have previously ignored.

If you’re feeling alone, remember that it won’t last forever and consider how you might turn it into a victory.

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