Question: I am really struggling (perhaps involving depression). [Reader describes personal circumstances here; removed for privacy sake] I am not involved with any group (church or whatever) as I don’t have any desire to get out like that. I am a strong/devoted Christian and that is what keeps my head above water. I worry what will become of me when I am living here alone, my greatest worry. I am so lonely. Are there web sites, blogs of folks who are where I am?
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It’s hard to know how to advise you when you’ve dismissed the idea of “getting out” because that IS THE ANSWER, the only answer to your situation.
Invest your time and life in others. That is THE CURE for loneliness and depression caused by too much time sitting around feeling sorry for yourself.
How are you a “strong Christian” if you are not out involved in a good Christian gathering (church)? That is why the Bible commands us not to “forsake assembling” ourselves (Heb 10:25). You cannot be a strong Christian in isolation. God knows what is best for us and that why He told us to regularly MEET for worship, fellowship and service together.
You are only alone because of your refusal (based on feelings or desire) to find other local Christians to be your “family”. You DO NOT need to find other people who “are where you are at”…. continuing in self pity and sitting around lamenting life with others who feel just like you is like a person who has a drug problem hanging out with drug addicts to discuss how bad they have it.
I know my advice here is rather blunt, and may even seem insensitive. But trust me, it’s not. Like the Doctor who needs to cut you open or stick with a needle to help you heal, my advice is given with the best intention of shaking you loose from the depressing direction you are headed and “heal” your situation.
Your feelings don’t matter PRIMARILY. Feelings are a byproduct of our CHOICES. Who cares if you “don’t have the desire” to get out and become involved. You may not have the “desire” to have your chest cracked open for open heart surgery either, but you would do it IF YOU NEEDED TO. Same thing here… You may not have the “desire” to get out of bed and go to work, but you CHOOSE to do it because it’s what NEEDS to be done.
Get up. Right now. This minute. Don’t wait. Get up, get out. Get involved in investing your life in other people. Help at nursing homes. Help with needy kids. Minister at Church. Serve and help others. Find, and get involved, with people who are DOING SOMETHING WITH THEIR LIFE (as opposed to finding other people “in your situation” where you can engage in a group pity party).
I’ll state this confidently:
the number one cure for
run-of-the-mill “blues” (depression) is to quit
focusing on yourself and focus on serving others.
Every day you sit alone, purposely isolating yourself and feeling sorry for your struggle, is another day YOU CHOOSE “depression”, YOU CHOOSE loneliness, YOU CHOOSE isolation. Yes, you can go find MILLIONS of people who will tell you depression is a sickness you cannot help, and it’s not your fault. HORSE PATOOEY!
The typical bout of depression is caused by self focus, self pity and discontent. All of those are CHOICES that people make then blame the resulting FEELINGS on “illness”. That is humanist hogwash (and the usual disclaimer: I’m not talking about physical depression caused by genuine physical trauma or sickness. I’m talking about the common “I don’t feel good about life ‘blues'”).
FEELINGS FOLLOW CHOICE. Make the CHOICE to get out, serve, invest your life in others, become active with other “strong Christians” and very soon (probably immediately) you’ll find that your FEELINGS and DESIRES will “magically” change.
You are only alone if you CHOOSE to be alone. Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and tell me where you live, and how to contact you. By the end of the week, a train load of fellow Christians will contact you and invite you to “not be alone” anymore.
Knock off the pity party. Self pity is the most pitiable and pitiful of all human emotions. You’re a blessing. Get up, get out, and become a blessing to others and there you’ll find THE CURE to your loneliness and depression.
Email and blogs are “cold”, lacking body language and facial expression. So you’ll just have to CHOOSE to believe this advice is given with a big hug and a huge dose of love.