Lonely, but Press In

In our millenial generation the reality of loneliness often rears its ugly head. This in turn is perceived as suffering and discomfort. We are a social generation. We love to be with people, feel cherished, and be in community with like-minded folk. As we seek to live in such territory, pains such as isolation and loneliness become antithetical discomforts to our pursuit for peace through friendship, community, and solidarity.

As followers of Jesus many of know the truths that tie us to the Gospel; many of us know that God himself is with us and for us, not against us.

Often times, however, we do not allow the reality of God’s wonderful presence permeate our lives; we do not allow the reality of his goodness and lovingkindness to take root in our hearts and minds.

“Deep river, my home is over Jordan,
Deep river, Lord, I want to cross over into camp-ground.
Deep river, my home is over Jordan
Deep river, Lord, I want to cross over into camp-ground.
Oh, don’t you want to go to that gospel feast,
That promised land where all is peace?
Oh deep river, Lord, I want to cross over into camp-ground.”

This song, Deep River, was a song sung by black slaves as they sought solace amidst cruel and terrible white masters. In the eyes of slaves, their suffering at the hands of their masters resembled the pains and trials of the Israelites who spent forty long and painful years wandering in the desert.

This song, also known as a negro spiritual, was a call to hope for something their eyes could not see, but a reality their hearts believed in after their time on Earth-it is a reality in absent of pain and suffering, a place of perfect worship for the Father, and full of rejoicing.

None of us could possibly imagine what it is like to be a slave; the extent of our suffering, however small in comparison, brings to light that this world is not all there is for us. The suffering we see in the media, the pain I experience in sin and being imperfect, and the reality of the wage of sin in others is plenty enough to convince me that heaven is what I long for.

In fact, heaven is no longer a simple desire or wish; it is a desperate plea in which I cry Maranatha (Come, Lord Jesus).

Brethren, in our times of trouble let us first turn to the word of God. In it we will find that its comforts are more fulfilling, convincing, and full of hope than any other comfort the world could offer. Let us turn our gaze to the Father who is perfect in nature and interceding on our behalf.

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