Why did God allow me to be lonely?
A woman shares some of the benefits she experienced because God allowed her to suffer with the challenges of loneliness.
1. God used it to turn my attention to Himself.
God used my childhood loneliness to turn my attention to Himself and to seek out His friendship first and foremost. My intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ is now my most precious treasure. I am eager to spend a quiet afternoon or evening with the Lord. I delight in seeking first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, knowing that every other good thing will be added to me in God’s precise timing.
2. God used it to develop skills in reaching out to others first.
Solomon counseled that the one who desires to have friends must show himself friendly. (See Proverbs 18:24.) In obedience to this truth, I exerted myself to be friendly to all the people I have met since about age thirteen. As a result, I now have a circle of intimate friends, but I also have many who would think of me as their good friend, and hundreds of other special acquaintances.
3. God used it to help other lonely people.
The Lord developed in me a sensitivity and understanding [for] other lonely people so I would be able to encourage them with God’s wisdom. I have noticed that lonely and hurting people seem to be attracted to me. I can also spot lonely people even if they are showing off in front of a crowd.
4. God used it to teach me how to think.
Being alone so much allowed me to do a lot of thinking. I noticed that this is something that busy, social people do not always have time for. Further opportunities to meditate on God’s Word came when I had what others considered to be a dull and boring job and also during times of deep spiritual disappointment. A desire to express myself in writing grew out of all these times of contemplation and soul-searching.
5. God used it to restrain frivolous talk.
When I am with people whom I trust, I have a tendency to chatter without restraint. My quiet times with the Lord have given me time to think over my past failures and learn to correct certain habits.
6. God used it to prepare me for leadership.
The phrase “the backside of the desert” describes the extended times of being alone that God gave to Moses, Paul, and other leaders whom He prepared for service. As I have become involved in church and community projects, I have seen how my time alone with the Lord shaped my ideas and methods for the task. God’s ideas and methods do not always mesh well with the world’s way of doing things, but that is why it is so important to spend time alone with the Lord in order to find out His ways and His thoughts.
7. God used it to develop an understanding of families.
As I work with families, I am often asked how I can understand them since I have never been married or had children of my own. The answer is that during my times of being alone, I have had much opportunity to spend time observing, studying, and praying about family relationships. This study has helped me learn how relationships work in a family and how to talk to family members who often feel alone.
This testimony is found in A Comprehensive Course in Effective Counseling, Booklet Five, pages 21-22.