Loneliness. It can rear it’s ugly head in many ways and through many situations. It’s the darkness when it’s hard to find the light. The silence of it can leave your mind feeling loud and restless. Lies will tell you that you’re damaged goods, that you won’t be loved or accepted. That something must be wrong with you because what’s worse than loneliness? The feeling of rejection that stirs in the stillness of it all.
When someone that you care about rejects you, how do you move on without it negatively affecting your self esteem and your self worth? How do you move forward and not question what’s wrong with you because this person doesn’t want to be your friend?
Maybe you’re feeling lonely as you walk through a season of few relationships. Maybe you feel misunderstood. Maybe you long for deep friendships and women who just get you. You might struggle to make new friends or maintain relationships with current ones. Maybe social events cause you great anxiety and simply striking up a conversation with someone new causes you to lean in to the comfort and safety of your home instead. Perhaps past rejection or betrayals, failed relationships and hurt have scarred so deeply that you fear putting yourself out there again.
Sometimes rejection comes as the result of sharing your truth. Sometimes it comes as the result of being transparent and honest. You may have courageously opened up to someone and in turn they pushed you away. Sometimes people in your life won’t be able to handle your honesty because it would mean having to take a good hard look at themselves or their own shortcomings. Perhaps your openness would have meant them having to take the time to go beneath the surface in your relationship and they just weren’t willing. Sometimes your transparency will make others feel uncomfortable and it’s easier for them to look the other way than to offer comfort, support, advice or friendship. Other times people just won’t like you for reasons you won’t ever understand, or for no good reason at all.
Sometimes feelings of rejection come when you are betrayed or failed by people you love and count on. People you trust. Perhaps your expectations are for a relationship you don’t receive back from them, the kind of relationship you see other people enjoying and this leaves you feeling hopeless, hurt and lonely. It may cause you to look inward and wonder what is wrong with you? It may cause you to question if you’re valued or worse yet, valuable.
So how do you deal with rejection and the loneliness that follows when someone fails your trust or expectations?
Here’s the thing, you won’t make everyone happy. Not everyone will get you. Not everyone will appreciate you. Not everyone has good intentions and some people will just be oblivious to the pain they cause you. There is however good news. Plenty of people will love you for who you are. Pour in to those people. Focus on them. Be thankful for them and stop giving energy to worrying about the ones who don’t.
The even better news? God loves you. God cares. God will stand by you through your flaws, quirks and falls from grace. Unlike the people who may reject you, who may refuse forgiveness or second chances, who may disregard you or treat you poorly, who may betray you; He will never leave you or forsake you. He is for you. He is with you.
In the stillness when you are hurting. When you are believing the lies that you are not good enough, that you are not loved, that something is wrong with you, that you need to change to gain someone’s acceptance, that you should be silenced in order to not make others uncomfortable, or that you will feel alone forever, remember these important truths;
“Yet He transforms a dry, lonely desert into pools of living water, parched ground into lively springs.” Psalm 107:35
“Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. ” Luke 12:6-7
“The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17
“You give me your shield of victory, and your right hand sustains me; you stoop down to make me great.” Psalm 18:35
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39
“But he said to me, ” My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
“Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.” Psalm 27:10
“For the LORD will not reject his people; he will never forsake his inheritance.” Psalm 94:14
“What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:13-16
“You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you. Many are the woes of the wicked, but the LORD’s unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him.” Psalm 32:7-10
“The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken.” Psalm 34:17-20
“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.” Isaiah 40:29
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him.” 1 John 3:1
“Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:6-7
“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.” Isaiah 43: 2
“For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” Deuteronomy 20:4
Friends, there’s even more good news to be found in the Bible. Dive in if you need to be reminded that you are loved. Take heart in this; when people don’t accept you, He does. When people fail you, remember that He never will. When you feel alone, be comforted knowing that He is always with you.
When you’re feeling rejected and lonely, remember that in Him you will always have a friend, a father, a comforter, a protector, an advisor, a confidant, and a safe place. If you ever find yourself alone in the darkness, crying out for the light, He will be there. He’ll give you all the joy and peace that your heart desires, for He desires YOU! He will love you and be with you all the days of your life, without fail, especially in your lonely seasons, even when it feels like the rest of the world has forgotten all about you, and that is the greatest love story of them all.