3 main reasons why we stay lonely:
- We're hiding. Guilt and shame has left us in a place where we may not feel worthy or are simply embarrassed. The grace of God allows people to love us despite who we are in our flaws. He offers us freedom from our screw-ups.
- We're mad. Anger and bitterness has brought us to a place where we don't want to be in relationship with others and/or we've simply aliented the people around us. Sometimes we're angry at God and wonder why He allows bad things to happen in our lives... There is nothing like the doubt that comes from sorrow. Psalm 34:18 "He is close to the brokenhearted and the crushed in spirit..." God lives in the gallows.... He's closest to us where we are most broken, where we've fallen.
- We're afraid. Fear can make you doubt the motives of the people around you from family, to neighbors, employers, and doctors which can continue to a lonely place. God offers us a trade. What we have in our brown paper bag for what He has in His.
God offers us an unending buffet in his bag yet there are people who insist on staying isolated with their bologna sandwich bag. We all belong to Christ... He's constantly looking for those of us who are lost and lonely.
Consequences to being lonely? More likely to die young because of affects on the immune system, high blood pressure, infections, and insomnia. Don't settle for isolation, your emotional and physical health depends on it!
- Are you struggling with guilt or shame? Anger and bitterness? Fear?
- Do you have questions or anger towards God for something that's happened in your life?
- Is there someone you know you can reach out to that's alone?
We were not meant to be alone. God has a great purpose and plan for all of us. We belong to Him.
Jesus, please help us to continue to take steps and free us from our loneliness.
- If I stay on the current trajectory of my life and the decisions I’m making… am I headed to become the person I was meant to be? Am I on the right path?
It's been said, "if you keep doing the things you've been doing for the last five years, you're going to get the same results..." Here are some areas I've been off the path in my life (to name a few):
- My identity was wrapped up in my career and what I was able to accomplish in my job
- I used to obsess about my retirement spreadsheet, how much money I would need to retire, and how soon could I retire
- My past pains created fears for my future
- I would say "yes" too often, be spread too thin, and wouldn't have a real impact anywhere
- Any remaining "white space" I had to my calendar was filled with a side business with hopes to make more money
- Many weeks I would be gone three or four evenings during the week filled with busy activity rather than investing in my wife or kids
There are two things I've learned I am great at.... being busy and spending money. Amazingly, both come very easily for me. When it comes to my next five years, my time and the money I've been entrusted with will dictate much of where my heart and future legacy will be.
- Can I reallocate $15 a week or more out of renting movies, eating out, or buying gadgets and shift those funds into building churches in India and expanding the opportunities of Online Church?
- Could I shift 2-3 hours a week of emails into spending more time with my family and kids?
- What if I spent one less late night watching mindless TV and repurposed that time to having coffee with a new friend?
We get the opportunity to connect with hundreds of people online here every week who want to live a life that's on purpose. Are you connecting with new people to take steps with?
So how about you? Who will you become in 5 years?
So what if today was my last day? What things in my current schedule would simply become irrelevant? How would I spend those last 24 hours?
Here are some things that come to my mind:
- I would want to spend it with my wife and kids
- I would want to reassure, encourage, and speak life into my loved ones.... I'd want to do anything I could to tell them to live the life God created them for, make a difference, and leave a mark
- I'd thank my friends for the memories and the impact they all had on my life...
- I'd write notes to my kids that they could hold onto forever
- I would shoot a video for my funeral
Someday we're all going to die. It seems to make sense that each of us should be pressing in to what we want our remaining years to be remembered for....
As we launch into our life together at Granger Community Online Church, we have an opportunity to:
- Be part of launching 250 new churches in India
- Invite literally anyone from anywhere in the globe to experience and share church together and discuss
- We can be intentional about surrounding ourselves with a few friends to be on mission with us wherever we are
- Launch new service times as we build volunteer teams to reach more people across the globe encouraging them to get in the game and play their part
What are you choosing to be intentional about? How would you spend your last day?
Great days are ahead!
With eight of us sitting around a table testing Online Church, we decided to open up feedback to the Twitter world.... thanks to the input of scores of friends, we got great suggestions on the site to make continuous improvements.
Check out this site for one of the quickest screen shot posts in a matter of minutes visiting! Great sneak peek here:
Thanks again to all who participated, it was amazing to experience!
I don't know about you, but several times during the "Making Love Last" series I thought someone had bugged my house and tapped actual conversations between my wife and I. Here are a few highlights and thoughts for Next Steps:
- "The God of the universe knows your name and loves you right where you are." I know this but it is a helpful reminder for me to actually let that sink in...
- "You matter to me more than I matter to myself"... Several times I was hit between the eyes of how I can so easily drift to make it about me...
- What are you putting your trust and hope in? Your job? Your health? Your 401K?... Hundreds this past weekend decided to put there hope and trust in Christ, am I fully embracing the One who first loved us?
- "Grace is never about earning; grace is always about effort." How much effort are you putting into your relationships? What about your relationship with Christ?
How about you? What steps are you taking to Make Love Last?
I'm excited to post for the first time on the Granger Community Online Church blog! We are launching into a great adventure reaching out to the globe with our Online Church experience. We'll continue to be developing the blog in the upcoming days and weeks.
So what is Church Online? Can you really "do" church online? We'll explore these questions and more as we take steps forward. Thanks to many friends and support along the way, we're getting close to launch!
Want to know more? Would you like a sneak peek to the site and hear about the opportunities be be involved? We're going to have our first team meeting here:
Where: Meet at GCC Cafe at 10:20, we'll be moving to a different room around 10:30
When: Sunday, September 13th
Time: 10:30 AM- 11:20 AM
Can't make it on site? Join us at 10:40 EST online at live.gccwired.com in chat!
Bring your laptop if you have one! Look forward to meeting you! Mark
My Twitter: markmeyer