Life is so full of clutter. Odd jobs, random people and unmet obligations at work. And of course the unsaid things, tiny broken hearts and unrealised dreams in relationships. It’s all clutter that ends up weighing down the mind, then the soul.
Solitude is the best medicine to clear your head sometimes. That gnawing feeling at the base of your stomach is just your gutt telling you to stop and take stock of the situation. We often ignore this feeling and end up swept up and unable to control our circumstances. So, what am I going on and on about this time? The management of pain.
When I’m incommunicado, I have only one person to talk to and that is God. When you tear away the distractions it’s easier to look to him because, well, there’s no one else to look to. It’s nice to just say anything and complain and vent and pray and beg knowing He loves you enough to listen to you all the time.
I can’t say the same for people. We rarely rise up and love our neighbours how we’re supposed to. Forget neighbours – we rarely love the people we claim we love the way we’re supposed to. Let’s face it, it’s a chore sometimes to sit through the tears and moaning of a friend who’s just had a fight with her fiance. It’s not easy giving constant advice to those who really don’t seems to hear a word you’re saying, or even love someone you’re dating who doesn’t seem to understand you. It’s so much easier to say ‘Pray about it friend, it will be ok’. Although I’ve used this statement myself, I don’t think it should be used to make up for a human touch and personal engagement of a loved one. When the tears are unstoppable, all that’ll really help is someone to cry to, someone who cares enough to be there and sit with you through it. That’s the difference between a stranger and those who claim to love you, right?
How can we claim to love and turn a deaf ear to friends in pain? How can we not try to empathize with them? And if possible to offer help and support – isn’t that the Christian way? Isn’t that what God wants us to do. Prayer is extremely important but what use is it if we do not follow it up with our actions? I can pray and say, ‘Lord let this person find comfort’, and then do I walk away or reach out and say soothing and encouraging words. It is part of being the salt of the earth; part of loving how Christ wanted us to. I think by loving openly, although we become vulnerable, we increase our capacity to love and be loved.
So, maybe my self-imposed solitude is not such a good idea. But where are all those people who love you by drawing from God? I have encountered but a few, and these few are a blessing. I strive to be one myself, but sometimes it’s hard when you have expectations that your care will be returned. That’s when you need to stop and manage your pain. Can we manage the hurt whilst we still love – I’m not sure. But I think if we can persevere, we will be stronger for it and not lose our savour.