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Life of an Ordinary Aussie Woman

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Cultivating Connectedness

We’re not designed to live solo…

We are made in the image of the One who was already in perfect relationship within the trinity and we are designed to be in communion with Him and each other…

Yet from what I’ve read loneliness is one of the biggest problem’s facing our western societies today. What used to be a problem for mostly older people, according to my study at the end of 2015, loneliness was the largest problem for youth in Australia…yes above bullying and mental illness….and let’s not forget the middle aged people, I know people of my age who feel disconnected, isolated and alone.

In a day-and-age when here in the West we are more connected via technology more than ever before, why is loneliness taking new victims at rapid speed?

From what I’ve read academics suggest each individual needs at least 4-5 core people they are connected with to not feel disconnected from a group, or alone. They need 4-5 key people to encourage and uplift them, who rarely take from the relationship to feel secure, and then able to feed back into other relationships which are more taxing on their time and emotions.

In my opinion from simply living life, it’s my observation that many due to life challenges, fall into a trap of faithless existence and of isolating themselves from others…You see, we all want great friends and our church communities to be an epicenter of real loving interaction, yet due to life knocking us down, we sit back and wait for friends to come to us…or worse still when we make a new acquaintance, we don’t put in as our own needs are so high; we demand too much from our new friend and lose them.

I have been in large congregations and felt lonely and not cared for. Yet I have been in large congregations and felt loved as a handful of people have reached out to me.
I have been in small churches and wondered, “Who else will you speak to today if not me?” Yet I have been in small churches where I have felt a part of the family and accepted.

I don’t think the size of the congregation matters, I think the attitude of the people does. It’s an attitude of faith, hope and love as Corinthians 13 speaks of that matters. Furthermore, it is only by exercising our faith through serving our brothers and sisters, by being a true, faithful friend that we in turn will receive back solid, Christian support and friendship...real connection and community!

Proverbs 18:24 speaks of a true friend that sticks closer than a brother. As the Church are we being that type of friend to others, and are we willing to cultivate church groups which live this? Are we willing to extend ourselves to make our lives and communities ones which; genuinely care, engage and encourage others, and celebrate the success of others?

We need to remember whatever we desire, others desire too.

I had something happen today which has been personally challenging, but I decided to reach out for support by a group prayer request. I did this because I decided to not isolate myself and to allow my brothers and sisters to help me carry this burden. I did this because this is the support I want to cultivate in my own life and is the support I am willing to extend back to others.

We are not designed to do life solo and I truly thank The Lord for His children whom He has given me to do life with. I am not alone – I have The Lord and my brothers and sisters. I know I go through challenges but I also know that they enable me to draw close to The Lord for true comfort and later extend that comfort with true empathy back to others (2 Corinthians 1:4).

Yes, we’re not designed to live solo…We are made in the image of the One who was already in perfect relationship within the trinity and we are designed to be in communion with Him and each other…May you know and cultivate this connection in your own life!

Love Mel.

Let me leave you with the inspiring, Tim Timmons...

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