Curled up on my couch in the late hours, she fought back tears as she replayed the events out loud.
“Everyone was invited but me. I sobbed on my sofa because I couldn’t understand why I was the only one left out.”
My heart ached for her, because I know the feeling. At some point in life, I think we all do. But also in that moment, it was so clear to me that I wasn’t alone in my yearning and hunger for solid community. Ever been there?
+ + + +
If you feel left out right now, if you feel alone in a crowded room, if it feels like there are tons of posses in huddles around you and you don’t fit into a single one — I have a word for you.
God doesn’t love you based on the love others have for you.
No matter if you have friends to call on the phone about what happened at work today, or if you have someone willing to drop everything to come help you with a crying baby — it doesn’t exclude you from God’s love if your list of BFFs is short or nonexistent.
You matter to King Jesus because He created you. And that’s the end of it.
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I believe God built us for relationships, I really do. Unfortunately, though, just because we were built for something, doesn’t always mean our brokenness doesn’t get in the way of thriving in our purpose, am I right?
This means that although we long for a hand to hold and someone to dance in the car with, life doesn’t always give us what we long for. And thank goodness, because if it did, why would we need God?
God is our only perfect friend. He’s the only one who, no matter what, stands by us always. He’s the only one who will be a stronghold for you in each of life’s seasons, dark or full of light.
I’ve been the one in need of good community, lost for where to find it. But — don’t hear me playing the victim — I’ve also been the one to shut down and toss away the community I had, when the going got tough.
So wherever you are today — with many friends, without a single one, or with acquaintances you long to become close with — consider how you can be more like Jesus to those around you. Consider the person that eats alone in her office. Consider the one at church that roams around, smiling through the crowd but never asked to lunch. Consider the hearts around you, because they matter to King Jesus. Be the friend you hope to have.
And if you’re the one hungry for a good group of friends, pray to your Heavenly Father for them, but pray too, for a deep knowing that full contentment and joy ultimately comes from Him alone.
Jesus Himself was a “man of sorrows,” and had His own failed friendships. Even in the moment He needed friends the most, He was betrayed. Mocked. Left alone by His own disciples. Consider that, as you’re navigating your own journey of friendships, Jesus knows how you feel, and has been there — quite a few times. Rest in that your Savior relates in the most beautiful way (Luke 22).