THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS: A Lonely Servant
Posted on March 19, 2019 by America's Keswick in Freedom Fighters
“Oh, that I could go away and forget my people and live in a travelers’ shack in the desert. For they are all adulterers—a pack of treacherous liars.” — Jeremiah 9:2 (NLT)
I don’t pretend to be an expert on the subject of loneliness. I know it happens to me every so often, but as quick as I start to feel its effects is as quick as a boat comes and gets me off its island. However, if there is one thing I have gotten from serving in ministry over the years, is sometimes you do wind up being alone from time to time.
I facilitate an Addictions Victorious recovery meeting in my church and a fellow came in seeking help with an issue today that gets shunned by the church community as a whole. It even challenged my own belief system but as I sought Gods insight on the matter, I began to realize that this was my calling and the person in front of me needed Jesus just as much as I do. As time went along, I starting seeing how folks in the entire church community started to distance themselves from this matter, sometimes even stating, “You’re a bigger man then me” before backing off. As insensitive as I thought this was, I stayed the course God put before me. I really felt alone but God is still God, His plans are still His plans and the outcome was still the outcome.
The Bible is full of guys who have been left standing alone while doing the will of God even if no one else cares but the stand out for me is Jeremiah the prophet. Jeremiah gets chosen to go announce to an extremely disobedient Israel that not only have they broken their covenant with YHVH but He is going to remove His blessing from them and allow them to be plundered and taken into captivity. In verse 19 of chapter 1 in Jeremiahs book YHVH offers this engouement, “They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you, and I will take care of you.” From then on, Jeremiah will face persecution and eventually fade into the land of Egypt.
It must have been a tough thing to watch, as a Babylonian Army came marching through the broken walls of Jerusalem. He’s obedient to the call of YHVH to say to these people “REPENT” but they absolutely refused to listen. So, God’s people, are carried off into exile and leave Jeremiah to write, “How lonely sits the city that was full of people! She has become like widow who was once great among the nations! She who was a princess among the provinces has become a forced laborer” (Lamentations 1:1). Jeremiah was a lonely voice crying out in a spiritual wilderness, and when he wasn’t taken seriously, the loneliness of an actual wilderness seemed a better a place than to be feeling lonely in the midst of his own people.
Sometimes those of us who are in ministry won’t fess up that we’re in a lonely patch of land. We’ll proclaim that God will never leave us nor forsake us so He is always with us. That might be theologically true, but we may be kidding ourselves and our practicing ain’t lining up with our preaching. It’s okay to admit your loneliness because that happens. Think on this…Jesus also felt loneliness while He was on the Cross. “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani? (My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me?)” (Matthew 27:46b). It’s not a bad thing to cry out to God when you feel alone.
Sometimes we see only the horizontal while we’re alone in the wilderness moment so maybe if we looked into God’s Word, we could change the way we see our circumstance. Yes, that’s cliché but its true. Go to the Psalms and see how David is dealing with things. In there you’ll find that you’re not alone…ever!! I’ve always been one who finds out there is a network of others who are in the same boat with ministry once I’ve read something from God’s Word.
Ya know, Jeremiah really didn’t lose complete focus on what YHVH decided to do to a disobedient people. Some where in the middle of his lamentation Jeremiah will pen this, “Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, ‘Therefore I hope in Him!” (Lamentations 3:22-24). If there was anything he could take away from what God assigned him to do is that Jeremiah knew that “Hope deferred makes the heart sick” (Proverbs 13:12). And yes, to say there is always hope is cliché but that doesn’t mean you have to abandoned it. Amen?
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris, a graduate of The Colony of Mercy (11-2003) has been married for 25+ years (Kathy), has a married son (Kevin) and a daughter in college (Karen). He has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008.
Daily Quote: “The presence of the Holy Spirit can counter every aspect of loneliness by His presence, comfort, quickening, direction, and power. The Christian’s challenge is to identify the loneliness he is experiencing then rely on the Spirit’s presence to show a way of escape.” — Dr. David Jeremiah
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: You who love the Lord, hate evil! He preserves the souls of His saints; He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked. – Psalm 97:10