Pollsters say their research reveals that nearly half of us are troubled by periods of loneliness. These melancholy moods may arrive for a number of reasons: living a long distance from people we love, distrust of others, divorce, a recent relocation or even the arrival of a season that triggers memories of past family gatherings.

Perhaps you’re one of these lonely ones.

What can you do to lessen your loneliness? Try reaching out to other lonely people. A widow told me she had learned to cope with being alone by visiting people in nursing homes. There she shared her faith and gave words of encouragement to others unable to be out and about among their friends.

A husband and wife concerned about lonely people make regular visits to prisoners. Their love for these forgotten ones has made a difference in their own lives and added hope to those who often feel hopeless. While the criminal justice system grinds along in dismay over what to do about repeat crime, these two and others who now work with them are witnessing the power of their concern for the lonely and the message of God’s love that they bring. An entire pew at their church is now often occupied by former prison inmates. The “Miracle Pew” it’s called.

Jesus added a special dimension to ministering to lonely and hurting people, saying: “For I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink, I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me, I was in prison and you came to Me.” (Matthew 25:-26)

Knowing that His hearers might be confused by His words since they had not ministered to Him in all these caring ways, He added: “Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.”

When these lonely times come to you, remember others are lonely too.

Somebody needs you.

Pick up your phone and call someone you’ve been neglecting.

Write a letter to one who is ill or has suffered a great loss and who may be wondering if anyone cares.

Invite a lonely person to attend the services of your church and offer to provide transportation so there will be no excuse for not accepting your invitation.

Change the focus of your thoughts from yourself to others.

Many churches and nonprofit charitable organizations find themselves facing financial needs. You can have a part in their good work by making a generous contribution, sharing your blessings with people in need and lifting the loads of others who are busy doing the same.

Seize the opportunity to introduce a lonely person to your Lord. Jesus longs to take away your loneliness and that of all the lonely people you will ever meet. “I will never leave you nor forsake you,” He said.

Rest on His promise and share it with others.

There’s no reason for you to feel lonely anymore.

Roger Campbell was an author, a broadcaster and columnist who was a pastor for 22 years. An anthology containing over one hundred of his best columns, “Everywhere You Go There’s a Zacchaeus Up a Tree,” is now available at your local or online bookseller. Contact us at rcministry@ameritech.net or on Facebook at yourfaithadventure.


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