We Aren’t Made To Be Alone!

The stress is beginning to show:

Marriages are hurting—and more often than not, no one seeks help until a lot of damage is done.

Children are suffering from isolation. It isn’t just that they don’t get to “play with their friends”. It is the reality that their development depends on them interacting with other kids and adults in numerous ways—and right now it isn’t happening. They aren’t learning as effectively including learning about spiritual things. They aren’t developing intellectually, socially, emotionally or spiritually as much as they should be.

Families are experiencing self-inflicted pain—abuse, whether verbal, emotional, or physical is increasingly common.

People are grieving. Loved ones die, but we can’t gather to celebrate their lives, comfort one another, and point each other to Him.

People live in fear. Not of something they can see, but of something they can’t. Is it safe for me to touch that? Is it safe for me to be around you? Should I wear a mask? When I do, am I able to connect with you the way I did without a mask?

Stong relationships with other Christians is essential to our spiritual health. We need each other, but now our ability to interact is governed by isolation laws and availability. We are used to worshiping side by side with others. We are used to meeting in small groups and relaxing while praying, studying the Word, eating, and enjoying our friendships. We are used to meeting with others to talk about concerns, pressures, doubts. We are used to being able to contact one of our spiritual leaders and meet with them face to face to seek guidance regarding something very important in our life.

It is hard to do that now—if not impossible.

The Church is people, and people mean relationships. Relationships within the body of Christ with people in different places in their spiritual development. Relationships with others who are as committed as we are. Relationships with people who are safe—people I can pray with, talk to, and open up with about spiritual issues, life problems—whatever I am experiencing.

What can we do? Church leaders and members alike have to commit themselves to be as close as they can be, while still obeying laws and staying safe. I suggest the following:

  1. Commit to being involved in weekly worship with a high degree of participation.

Don’t make our worship service a TV program we watch. Instead, participate through singing, praying, communion, offering, and actively listening to the sermon with your Bible open.

  1. Connect with your groups through online programs.

Zoom, Teams, Google Groups, and others are all available—often free—so that small groups can meet together online. It isn’t the same as meeting in person but is far better than nothing. Take advantage of side chat opportunities with these programs just as you might pull someone aside and talk privately in a home group meeting.

  1. Study the Word together. Study—not read and discuss.

By studying at home before you meet, you are more prepared for the discussion when you do meet online. Once again, by doing this we avoid our study group meeting turning into a TV show we watch.

  1. Meet personally with other church members and leaders.

In many areas, we are allowed to meet in a restaurant, whether indoor seating or outside in the air. If you are able to have these meetings, do so. If not, take advantage of the same programs you are using for group meetings and meet one on one. Maintaining a personal connection to others in one on one interactions is extraordinarily important in times of isolation.

  1. Do not try to handle the isolation by yourself!

Yes, we are kept separate in many ways. But, if you are experiencing any problem, there are still people who love and care for you who can step up to help.  Pastoral staff, small group leaders, Bible study leaders, youth and children’s staff, Christian counselors, other members of the church. This may be in person or through electronics, but the fellowship with other believers is real!

We aren’t intended to walk as followers of the King alone, and when we make the effort to connect with others, we don’t have to be alone!

Know Jesus and Be Faithful!

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