The record in Genesis 2:18 states that when the first man Adam was created, God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”
The best friend we can have is our Heavenly Father. In II Corinthians 1:3,4 Paul acknowledges God as “the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles.” God himself expresses sorrow at the suffering of any of His children. He is a God of empathy. It says in Psalm 103:14, “…he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.”
God supports the lonely ones
In the past, many of God’s prophets experienced circumstances in which they felt lonely. To them, Yahweh was a source of support and comfort. Take, for example, Jeremiah, called to be a prophet at a young age. Among the 40 writers of the Scriptures, Jeremiah was perhaps the one who expressed the most about his personal feelings. In Jeremiah 1:6, he said, “Ah, Lord God! Behold, I do not know how to speak; I am only a child.” He felt timid and deficient when he received his first assignment from God. He had to rely fully on God. In Jeremiah 20:11, he recognizes that “…the Lord is with me as a mighty warrior; so my persecutors shall stumble and not prevail. They will fail and be thoroughly disgraced; their dishonor will never be forgotten.” In this verse, we can see that Yahweh was with him “as a mighty warrior.”
Some 300 years before Jeremiah, when Queen Jezebel heard of the death of her Baal prophets, she was furious and vowed to have Elijah put to death. Here is Elijah, an old man, fleeing and journeying some 450 kilometers, which is 280 miles, to Horeb in the Sinai peninsula. There he entered a cave to spend the night. God questioned him: “What are you doing here, Elijah?” Elijah explained that he felt he was the sole worshiper of God in all Israel, the only prophet left who was zealous for God’s service. Yahweh assured him that he was not alone. God was with him, and 7,000 of Elijah’s fellow Israelites were also with him, although unknown to him. The Lord God comforted and soothed Elijah and built up his faith (I Kgs. 19:4, 9-12, 15). He touched Elijah’s heart and encouraged the prophet not to give up on his duties. If, like Elijah, we ever feel lonely or worthless, we, too, can pray to Yahweh for strength.
From these and other examples, we can see God’s willingness to give support and loving comfort to His children who are lonely. “The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble” (Psa. 9:9). “God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in trouble” (Psa. 46:1). “The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him” (Nahum 1:7).
A man with deep feelings and sympathy
Jesus Christ is an example to us to be admired and loved for his perfectly balanced emotions. Luke describes Jesus’ reaction when encountering a funeral procession in the city of Nain:
As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out — the only son of his mother, and she was a widow…When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, ‘Don’t cry.’ Then he went up and touched the coffin, and those carrying it stood still. He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, get up!’ The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother (Luke 7:12-15).
We can overcome our loneliness, as the woman from Nain did, if we sincerely trust in Yahweh through his son the Lord Jesus Christ. We can experience the reassurance of having in Jesus one who can “sympathize with our weaknesses.” He certainly sympathizes with people who are lonely. Through him “we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Heb. 4:16). By emulating Jesus Christ in time of need, we can develop sympathy for those who experience grief, affliction, and loneliness. By helping others, we, too, can overcome our loneliness.
God’s work can help us overcome loneliness
Many of us have found comfort from the Scriptures. God’s work is full of practical counsel that can help us to overcome our loneliness. “For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Rom. 15:4). “I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go. I will counsel you and watch over you” (Psa. 32:8). In Romans, God’s word exhorts us: “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you” (Rom. 12:3).
To apply this advice, we may need to make adjustments in our daily thinking, develop humility and modesty, and have a realistic view of our limitations. This will certainly help us develop balanced and reasonable expectations. In Philippians, we are exhorted: “Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” As we sincerely give in a Christ-like way, in like manner, we will receive from others. This good fellowship helps to relieve feelings of emptiness and gives meaning to our lives and to the lives of others.
The Bible gives us abundant encouragement: “…let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another — and all the more as you see the day approaching” (Heb. 10:24,25). Engage in positive activities such as attending ecclesial activities regularly. This attendance can contribute to our spiritual, emotional, and general well-being. Speaking to others about the word of God and the soon return of Jesus Christ is an enjoyable way to fill our lives with wholesome activity. It keeps our mind focused in the right direction, fortifies our faith, and protects our hope.
Try to draw sincerely close to God in prayer. David exhorted: “Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall” (Psa. 55:22). By studying God’s word, you will lift your spirit. The psalmist wrote, “I am laid low in the dust; renew my life according to your word” (Psa. 119:25).
When no one will say, “I am lonely”
God has promised us a new world free from anxieties, frustrations, and negative feelings. God “will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Rev. 21:4). Included in that old order of things that will pass away are physical, mental, and emotional pains that we experience today.
Through His kingdom on earth in the hands of His son, the Lord Jesus Christ, God will cure us forever of our loneliness. He will give us new and wonderful things to do in an earthly paradise. The day will soon come when we will never again say, “I feel lonely.”