Why is it easy for us to feel lonely in the midst of a crowd? Or even at a bustling party full of family and friends — the pang of heartache and sadness coming up in the most people-filled circumstances?
In the past eight months since moving home, I have felt deep pangs of loneliness. But despite these moments where I want to clutch my heart as if someone had stabbed me, I have also experienced meaningful moments of solitude with the Lord. It is through the slow, churning process of moments of incredible loneliness where I get to develop new muscles aka the discipline of solitude.
Human beings are wired to connect with one another, to feel-to think-to live-to breathe-to take it all in-or … take nothing in and be numb to what is around us because it seems easier. It is in the latter where we can wallow in depression and loneliness.
Solitude is a different story. In solitude, there is comfort because I do not let circumstances dictate my emotions. There is inner peace–for me that comes from my faith, but for others it may come from different sources. No matter what tradition/faith you come from, when you are able to grab onto solitude and let your senses breathe in life around you, the loneliness gets easier. It does not completely fade away, but whether you are at the peak of the mountains, driving down an empty highway at three am, or in a crowded city street; instead of being overwhelmed by what you do not have — you can be overwhelmed and filled by capital L life that you are living in.
How many breaths do you have left to inhale & exhale? Embrace your season. Maybe your friends are not ideal right now. Maybe you are far away from your better half, family, or best friends. Those things will pass. Do not let what you lack stop you from relishing what is in front of you.