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The Loneliness Epidemic- 4- The Loneliness of Jesus

The Loneliness Epidemic
Day 4- The Loneliness of Jesus
Ruth P McDonald

“But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.” (Luke 5:16, ESV)

Jesus understands loneliness because He too experienced loneliness. While He grew up in a loving family and had a following of disciples, He also would have felt misunderstood. We often read in Scripture that Jesus withdrew to desolate places to pray to His Father. That connection meant so much to Him as it strengthened and refueled Him—just as it does for us today.

As Jesus was growing up, He was surrounded by sinners, yet was without sin Himself. People would be puzzled at His steadfastness in the face of temptation to sin, and as they got to know Him better and better, they may have even felt uncomfortable in the presence of Someone so morally perfect, as it highlighted their own weakness and sinfulness. He had no one who could relate. He had no one who could draw close and say they understood what He was experiencing. That’s a loneliness we cannot understand.

And yet that paled in comparison to the loneliness Jesus felt at His trial as His followers scattered and fled. Alone, He faced His sentence. Alone, He walked to the cross. Alone, He was lifted up to become sin for us. I enjoyed the following from desiringGod.org:

“Jesus’s loneliness reached its apex the moment He became sin for us on the cross and was ‘forsaken’ by his Father. First He was estranged by sinlessness and then from being sin. Jesus knew supreme rejection and loneliness. Which makes Him perfectly suited to understand yours. He is a high priest who can sympathize with this weakness (Hebrews 4:15). But Jesus doesn’t just understand your loneliness; he’s destroying it. Because He died on your behalf, you are no longer a stranger or alien, but you are a fellow citizen with the saints and a member of God’s family.”

In those hours of loneliness as Jesus became sin for us, His loneliness had purpose—He was the only One willing and able to pay the price our sin required. No one could help Him or assist Him in any way. And God, in His holiness, could not overlook sin and stop the suffering; Jesus had to suffer for our sin so He might become our Savior.

It’s precious that Jesus understands our loneliness and can be the One to whom we take our feelings; He is compassionate and knowledgeable in what we are experiencing. No matter how lonely we may feel, Jesus can relate to the sadness of our hearts. And just as Jesus used prayer in His moments of loneliness, so can we. Nothing else is more powerful than that connection with our Father in Heaven. He longs to fill us with Himself and see us prosper and enjoy fellowship within the family of God.

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