CHURCH NOTES: Tackling loneliness

With Helen Hotchkiss

Do you ever feel lonely? You’re not alone!

In a BBC survey in 2018, one third of respondents said they “often” or “very often” felt lonely. The Government has even appointed a Minister for Loneliness.

It seems that loneliness affects a lot of us, a lot of the time.

But why, in a world which is more connected than ever, should we experience this level of disconnectedness? Why is it sometimes so hard to build meaningful relationships with other people?

The Bible makes it very clear that the God who made us is a relational being. He has been in perfect loving relationship for all eternity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – and desires the same for those he has made. First to relate to him, as Creator, and then to each other.

Sadly, the Bible also makes clear that we try to find happiness in things that are not God: children, careers, houses, holidays. But nothing can take the place of a relationship with our loving Creator.

In Jesus, God entered our world as a human being and showed what it really means to relate. He willingly died the death I deserve for turning my back on my Creator. His resurrection offers me the gift of relating to God, and to others, as I was always meant to. The question is, am I willing to swallow my pride and accept it?

Helen Hotchkiss is a member of Christ Church Wokingham – which meets every Sunday at 10.30am at St Crispin’s School – writing on behalf of Churches Together in Wokingham

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