TODAY'S WORD FOR Tuesday, June 02, 2020:
A depressing feeling about being alone; destitute of sympathetic or friendly companionship; without company; isolated.
No one stood with me, but all forsook me. But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me.
II Timothy 4:16-17.
Look to the right and see; no one is concerned for me. I have no refuge; no one cares for my life. I cry to You O Lord; I say, “You are my refuge, my portion in the land of living.”
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
We have noticed because of what we see and because of the many emails receive that there are many lonely people in this world, more than any other time we can remember. We receive emails every day from wonderful friends like you and a day never goes by without someone telling us how lonely and hurting they are, more so now that we are in this period of social distancing because of the virus.
We respond to each of these people because we want them to know two important things. First of all, they need to experience a personal relationship with Jesus. When you have this relationship, He is with you every moment of every day. You will then want to begin to communicate with God by prayer and read the Bible daily so God can respond to your needs through His Word.
We also want them to know that we will pray for them and we care for them. In Psalms 68:5-6 the Psalmist says, “God makes a home for the lonely. Father of the fatherless and protector of the widows.”
Lack of family and friends is the basis of much loneliness. God cares for those who have lost their family. God commands us who desire to live in obedience to Him to care for orphans and widows both in the Old testament (Exodus 22:22) and in the New Testament (James 1:24).
How many times in life have you really felt lonely? When David wrote Psalms 142, he was hiding in a cave to escape from Saul’s men who were seeking to capture him. He felt that he was totally abandoned by everyone and that no one was even concerned whether he lived or died. He was truly alone. Saul had been chasing him for years and was seeking to kill him so that he would not become King of Israel.
David had to live on the run, fleeing from one place to another. There was no one he could trust or confide in for fear they would betray him. He had every reason to feel all alone.
David knew there was someone he could trust and confide in. He was confident that God loved him and cared for him and that he could call on him at his time of need wherever he was. Regardless of his circumstances he knew that God was there with him and that God heard his prayers. David trusted God to keep him safe and to protect him. God had chosen David to be the next king after Saul. David trusted that God would fulfill His plan for his life.
The verses from II Timothy were from the letter that Paul wrote while he was in prison and feeling lonely. In the Roman legal system of the day a person had two hearings. The first hearing established the charge and would rule whether there was evidence enough for a trial. This is when Paul told Timothy that no one came to stand with him and testify for him. This was a very lonely time for Paul because he needed support from his friends and they were not there.
Paul’s friends had deserted him but in verse 17 Paul says that the Lord was there with him. The Lord fulfilled his promise, given in Joshua 1:5, when He said that he would never leave or forsake those who belong to Him. That promise is good for us today and in our moments of loneliness we must remember, as Paul did, that our Lord will never leave us or forsake us if we are His child and our complete trust is in Him.
When you are experiencing a lonely time in your life read how David and Paul handled their lonely times. The key is very clear: Turn to your Lord and He will take you through your lonely time and bless you abundantly
The loneliest people in the world are those that do not know the Lord. Where is their hope? Who can they rely on in their time of need?
There are many situations in life that bring on loneliness both to the believer and the non-believer such as the separation from a spouse or being rejected by a child. When these moments come people look to what money, watching TV, playing games or visiting with a friend can have.
They do this to keep their mind off of the problem. This will not get rid of the loneliness because these are mere distractions, not solutions.
The Lord knew that it was necessary to take on our sins in order to save us from eternal death and at that time, He would be separated from His Father.
Think about the lonely time that Jesus had in the Garden of Gethsemane just hours before His death on the cross. On the cross Jesus cried out to God, “My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken Me.” As He understood that He alone would pay the penalty of sin so that all humanity could have the blessed hope of spending an eternity with God. While He hung on the cross separated from God, His father, by our sins. He has experienced how it feels to be abandoned and all alone and He has compassion for us when we feel lonely.
If you are feeling alone and rejected and feel that no one is near, talk to God. He knows how you feel. He is waiting for you to come to Him and He will be by your side and never leave you nor forsake you if you put your trust in Him.
Our memory verse for this week is found in Psalms 28:6.
Praise the Lord! He has heard my prayer for mercy.
Help me to be an encouragement today to someone that is lonely. Help me to be faithful to pray for a world that is lonely and needs You as their Savior.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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