Equality

“It is idle to say that men are of equal value. If value is taken in a worldly sense—if we mean that all men are equally useful or beautiful or good or entertaining—then it is nonsense. If it means that all are of equal value as immortal souls, then I think it conceals a dangerous error. The infinite value of each human soul is not a Christian doctrine. God did not die for man because of some value He perceived in him. The value of each human soul considered simply in itself, out of relation to God, is zero. As St. Paul writes, to have died for valuable men would have been not divine but merely heroic; but God died for sinners. He loved us not because we were lovable, but because He is Love. It may be that He loves all equally—He certainly loved all to the death—and I am not certain what the expression means. If there is equality, it is in His love, not in us.   

—from “Membership” (The Weight of Glory) by C.S Lewis
Remember, your value is not in what you wear or what your job is or what you’ve done or what you will do or whether you’re single or married–it is in who God is and what He has done for you.  And THAT will never change.  Isn’t it refreshing to realize that you don’t have to keep up with the Jones’?
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Dear Mandie

Dear Mandie,

I know both you and I have been going through the “valley of the shadow of death” lately and I know that you have many things that are weighing on your heart.

I have been praying for you, for your family, for your husband and his family.  If there were anything else I could do, you know that I would be right there ready to go.

I know God has given me your friendship as a very special gift and that this friendship has helped me to make it through hard times, times when I felt alone, tired, lacking in faith. My prayer is that I could be able to help you like God, through you, has helped me.

This song says it all.  This is for you.

Francesca Battistelli, Angel by Your Side

Does Single Mean Alone?

I’ve spent a portion of my life living in small rural communities and so have gotten used to being “alone” and actually quite like it.  Is this partly due to my selfish desire to be able to do what ever I want?  Maybe.  Is it because I’m comfortable with myself?  Maybe.  Maybe I’m just becoming a social pariah…

I only go out to get me a fresh appetite for being alone.
Lord Byron

The point is that as a single I can choose to be alone if I want to.

Is alone the same as lonely?

Language has created the word “loneliness’ to express the pain of being alone.  And it has created “solitude” to express the glory of being alone.  (Paul Tillich)

Being alone does not necessarily mean that you will be lonely.  One can be lonely in the midst of a crowd.  One can glory in being alone.  I think this is an important distinction.  My non-single friend once said to me that she felt so lonely.  I was shocked–how can she mean she was lonely?  She had a family around her all the time!

OK–so anybody can feel lonely, not just those who are single, and being alone doesn’t mean you have to feel lonely.  Now, as Christians, the question is:  are we ever really truly alone? Moses said to Israel in Deuteronomy 31:6, “Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or or terrified … for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”  Jesus tells us in John 10:29 that “no one can snatch them (us) out of my Father’s hand.”  If we are sitting in God’s hand, not only is that not alone but He’s pretty darn close to us!

The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be.
Anne Frank

Perhaps when we are feeling lonely the best thing to do is to cry out to God.  He is there and He loves us so much. One of my favorite hymns is In the Garden by C. Austin Miles, which says “I come to the garden alone … And He walks with me and He talks with me and He tells me I am His own, and the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.”  Perhaps the key to being in solitude rather than lonely is to talk to God and keep Him in the conversation.  He wants us to get to know him.  He wants communion with us!

For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone. Audrey Hepburn