“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Standing in the sanctuary for as long as possible to avoid my destination, I watched as each family headed for the door to spend Christmas Eve together. All in a line, husband, wife, and kids. Some would go home to open gifts. Others would wine and dine. But I would go home to an empty apartment, barren of any Christmas cheer…again.
I only wrote one letter to my future husband in my entire life before marriage, and it was on this Christmas Eve of which I wrote, “Where are you?! I can’t spend another Christmas Eve alone!! I’m so lonely. Please find me soon.” Through blinding tears, these words were scribbled on to a random piece of paper in desperation to be heard. This story has brought laughter to myself and many of my friends and family now looking back. But that night, there was only room for lament.
Loneliness is a heart breaker. You become numb to it for a short while until the pain of an empty house on a holiday reminds you of your reality. You see the cars surrounding the house next door, couples hand in hand, and pictures on Facebook. Each one is a harsh reminder of your quiet apartment and empty hands, with not even a picture to share. Even now, as I ponder that night, I remember the immense sorrow that rested in the pit of my stomach…a feeling I know some of you are experiencing as you read this. While I can’t relieve you of your loneliness, I can lead you to the Comforter of your soul.
I often wonder, if we truly understood the depth of God’s love and presence, would we experience loneliness like we do? After all, we know one day loneliness and sorrow will be a distant memory when we are in Heaven with Christ. But He has promised that He is with us now. In fact, the very Spirit of Christ lives in us. Though you feel alone, the truth is, the living God is with you everywhere you go. Hebrews 13:5 says God will never leave you nor forsake you. God never promised to take away our loneliness here on Earth…but He does promise to comfort us in it.
He is the God of all comfort. All comfort resides in Him and radiates from Him. The things of this world, including a husband, are not sources of true comfort. I know it feels that way. You may feel like a man will bring comfort in the dark of night, and to a point, he might. But, even he would be only a means by which the God of comfort uses to bless you. You see, God is enough. He will comfort you in your heartache. He truly is all you need.
In my times of suffering, I found myself longing for those around me to truly understand my pain. But we all hurt differently and experience different hardships. The Lord, however, knows our hearts, and He surely feels our pain. He understands what you’re going through and has promised to stay by your side through each tear.
Father, my heart breaks for the women who feel so very alone right now. Please draw them near during this season, and help them to find joy in You amidst the loneliness and pain. May they feel Your comfort this Christmas. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Read Psalm 37:3-7, and ask the Lord to help you trust in Him, delight in Him, commit your way to Him, and be still before Him. Remember, He is with you.