I know how it feels to have your heart twist when you’re bombarded with all these pictures of everyone around you having fun during the Chinese New Year festivities. All these pictures of your friends enjoying themselves at house-parties, surrounded by friends and family — it all looks perfect and fun.
But it’s also hard not to feel the grip of envy and a deep seated pang of loneliness.
You might be home alone by choice or by circumstance. You might be one of the “floaters” — people who don’t belong to any one social group/clique — and may inevitably fall to the sidelines when it comes to party invitations.
You also might be averse to going to parties for reasons that may include being a hardcore introvert or simply because you don’t feel up for it. Either way, it’s hard not to feel lonely when everyone seems to be having a good time and you’ve only got yourself for company during this period.
I won’t tell you all the cliches about how this feeling will past. Some of us struggle with the deep ache of existence regardless of what time of the year it is. And that’s okay. I’m here to tell you that it gets easier when you make the decision to approach God — even in the bareness of your schedule on a Friday night when everyone else is out having fun.
In Matthew 8, a leper — who probably knows best what being outrightly ostracised by the rest of society feels like — found joy once he approached Jesus. In an instant and through that brief encounter, he received the healing he needed; all because he was brave enough to approach Jesus even in that moment of vulnerability.
You might struggle with feelings of isolation, of being left out or that you don’t belong. You probably also believe that no one will understand how you feel, and that no one ever could.
But the fact is, Jesus knows exactly how you feel (Hebrews 4:14-16). He was flesh and blood, just like you and me. And He probably felt the epitome of loneliness when His apostles fell asleep during one of his darkest hour at Gethsemane (Matthew 26:38-46) and as He hung on the cross (Matthew 27:46).
And as you chew on that thought, I want to remind you that your identity is not found in which social group you belong to, nor does it matter how many party invitations you’ve gotten — or the lack thereof. It doesn’t matter whether or not you have someone special to introduce your grandparents to.
You belong to One Person and God has already given you all freedom (2 Corinthians 3:17); you can live free from the chains of loneliness and isolation!
If you’re reading this and feeling like the loneliness is getting too much to bear, you just need to take one brave step — believe that the moment you approach God and ask Him for whatever you need, He will be faithful to provide it (Mark 11:24, Matthew 21:22).
No matter where you are, just know that Jesus sticks closer to you than a brother and will meet you wherever you’re at.
I love you so much, dear friend! 新年快乐. 🙂
With the warmest hug,