The Word — Hello Friend, Are You Lonely?

Published 4:12 pm Friday, August 26, 2022

To have friends, one must show themselves friendly. Pr. 17:17

One of the many challenges that are so pervasive in our society and our daily lives is “loneliness.” And this phenomenon ranks at the top for too many of God’s people. Loneliness has a way of calling in other opposing forces that causes one to seek the darkest corner of life and then deny their actual mental state of existence. Moreover, loneliness causes friendships to suffer and ultimately fall by the wayside.

Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and its continued raging variants, many people have been robbed of loved ones, friends, and friendships. This phenomenon alone has caused insurmountable loneliness in our close circles and beyond. Also, it is interesting to note that many people, no matter their predicament, refuse to admit that they are lonely and that their friends and friendships have diminished. Unfortunately, this is now a common phenomenon in the new sub-pandemic of the covid pandemic. The victims are now secluded to a great degree, and they often ward off friendships and succumb to the demon of loneliness.

It is now so common to meet people suffering from the aftermath and need to be as active as possible. Loneliness and isolation can be a pandemic within itself.

I recently read a story about a woman in her 60s, married for over 40 years, with five children. She has led a Christian life and is a committed worshiper. However, as active as she may seem, this woman readily admits that she experiences a wistfulness bout of not having a best friend and not now having the wherewithal to try hard enough with the friends she has, and the relationships are quickly diminishing. Moreover, she gives excuses not to be with others when the opportunity avails itself. Finally, she bows out gracefully and stays to herself. Believe it or not, reader, that is a story of many people in our everyday community living.

Proverbs’ writer succinctly states, “to have friends, one must show themselves friendly.” It does not lessen the instruction because of one’s challenging mental condition but rather the ingredients of the love of Christ Jesus that gives to others and simultaneously intuitively attracts others to you. No signs or flags are needed, just genuine concern and love for one another. Thus, there will be very little time for loneliness. And what a fantastic moment in time this day to be that friend that the Psalmist is calling us to be. And I assure you that in our gallant efforts, we will know that we are pushing “loneliness” out of the paths of true friendship. Call a friend today!

Rev. Dr. James Taylor III is the pastor of the Jericho Baptist Church in Farmville. His email address is: Jericho1@yahoo.com.