Unlovely, nay frightful, is the solitude of the soul which is without God in the world—this chill, houseless, fatherless, aimless Cain, the man who hears only the sound of his own footsteps in God’s resplendent creation.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord. His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence, by which He has granted to us His precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. ~ Peter, in 2 Peter 1
Those who struggled with addiction and have found freedom understand this.
One of the biggest problems in our battle, was this feeling that we were alone. We had no idea how to connect with people. And any time we tried, we ended up getting ourselves hurt, or hurting others – or both.
And in this isolation and pain, THE LIES COME IN LIKE A FLOOD…
- You are alone… You will always be rejected.
- You will never get better… Might as well keep going.
- You are a loser… Even in heaven people won’t be your friend.
- Your pain is not even worth fixing… Just smother it with (insert whatever here).
- Your salvation won’t even save you… Eternity will just be a long, waking nightmare. Even god will run out of things to do.
As we listen to the lies, in comes this creeping panic. We look around with wild eyes and reach for the only thing that brings us a fleeting moment of comfort. But, as we all know, the chemicals, food, money or the sex, doesn’t work. Still, we stay in this downward cycle – and get further isolated
Do you remember? Can you feel it even now?
Do you remember the panic? Maybe it was just me, but I doubt it.
Read the scripture above again. Note the wording. This is not some fancy classical Greek poem… It was written by a beautiful but rough-edged fisherman, named Peter. And Peter had a habit of speaking his mind very clearly.
What he says, is pretty much the exact opposite of the lies we have been listening to.
- You are not alone. You are included in a real relationship with a real God who does not change, and cannot lie.
- Things are already better. His Grace has saved you. You are already at peace with God. And, this will only be multiplied as you walk with Him through life.
- You are not a loser. You have already won. His divine power has already given us all of everything. We own the very keys to the Kingdom of Heaven, in Him.
- Your pain has already been healed. You are not alone. You are known, personally, and intimately. You are precious to the King of The Universe.
- Your salvation is already bigger than you yet know. You are free from time, and the world, and corruption, and failure. None of this will follow you into forever.
But, what comes next in the passage, should blow us away. It should leave us astonished! Remember, Peter is a straight-talker. No fluff. Read it, and let the isolation and panic and lies flee away: “so that through them, you might become partakers of the divine nature.” This word, ‘partakers,’ in the original language is very strong, and means a ‘mutual belonging,’ or a ‘joint-participant,’ or an included member.
We are on the team – on the first string. We are God’s posse. We are, if you will have the humility to accept it, fully included in the very family of God. Astounding? Yes. True? YES!
So, are you feeling alone? It’s a lie. Jesus did not die to resurrect, and to give us a little comfort in our loneliness. He did all of this to completely pull us out of the whole mess, and up into the very Presence of God, forever.
It really is time: abandon your fear, and panic. It is time to begin: get playing on the eternal team to which you already belong.
Relationship is the final stuff of reality.
~ Dr. Larry Crabb
May Grace, Peace, Joy, and Strength be yours today!
Makala is the author of “Living in the Presence” a site where he blogs about all things G_d related. He is also a graduate of the Colony of Mercy and a humble servant of Christ.