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We need one another, but there are times in everyone’s life when facing trials and troubles, that we may feel we are alone without others to aid or comfort us.
We often draw encouragement and strength from one another when we are experiencing difficulties and times of trouble as Ecclesiastes 4:9 -12 points out. The Apostle Paul also instructs us to “Bear one another’s burdens” (Galatians 6:2). But although we probably have many friends, relatives and people who care about us and want to help, we may often find ourselves in positions where they cannot help, or they have their own loads to carry.
When God created Adam, He stated it is not good that a man should be alone, so He created Eve (Genesis 2:18). But although they were very close when Satan tempted Eve, she alone was enticed. Adam failed in doing his part, too, but they fell one after the other—not together. And just like Adam and Eve, we face God alone, no matter how close our relationships may be.
Often those whom God called directly into His service felt alone. Abel, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Samuel, David and Elijah (1 Kings 19:10) are only a few examples of those whom God called to follow Him, and who faced severe trials. Paul was also called to serve God and was given a specific set of instructions from God that included suffering (Acts 9:15-16). Peter was another to whom Jesus outlined a death that was unique (John 21:18-19). These were paths which Paul and Peter would walk alone. They had the prayers of others with them, but no one could carry their burdens.
Jesus Christ was not understood by many of His own family and followers, and often had nowhere to lay His head (Matthew 8:20), and when He faced His trial and crucifixion he had to walk His path alone (Mark 14:27-31). He had loving followers and friends—but they could not take His place, and there were times when they forsook Him (Matthew 26:56), but Jesus always knew that God the Father was with Him (John 8:16 and 29). God, the Father, could not die for Jesus—Jesus alone had to die. Even in a crowd of angels and friends Jesus felt so alone that He cried out in anguish, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (Matthew 27:46).
God promises He will never leave us and Jesus Christ made the same promise (Hebrews 13:5). God was with and in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:19), and God is with and in us through His Holy Spirit, but we are responsible for our choices and actions. That is why there are consequences and penalties (and rewards). We may feel forsaken or wonder where God is in the midst of our struggles, but He is always there.
When Paul felt forsaken, he remembered the Lord stood with him and strengthened him (2 Timothy 4:17). Being alone does not mean we do not gain strength from God or those around us. All of us walk alone before God, though we are among others, and we will stand before Him alone in judgment (Matthew 12:36). Being alone is part of being human. It is part of learning to trust God.
We are always in the sight of a crowd of angels and of God the Father and Son. Many eyes are watching and voices are encouraging us. When we have strong faith and confidence in God, we are able to do much more than we can imagine because of the power that works in us (Ephesians 3:12 and 20). Walk boldly, for God walks at your side.
United News (Mar-Apr 2022)