Over the course of last weekend I went from having awesome time with friends and Stephen, to realizing that I’ve been lonely lately, and I was lonely once again as everyone returned to their normal lives (some in different cities).
I didn’t know how to process that, and normally I would’ve tried to fix it by spending time with Stephen, but I was housesitting/taking care of 4 kids and we had hardly had time to finish getting back on the same page after a misunderstanding, let alone for my extroverted emotional tank to be filled.
In my frustration, I vented to God a few pages in my journal, then decided to try to get over it until my crazy week was over.
On Wednesday, things started to change.
I got out of class early that afternoon, and found myself with a whole hour between classes, and a lot of sun shine outside! I found some steps to hang out on outside, and realized that I had my journal and one of my Bibles in my backpack (it’s always there actually, I just don’t use it nearly as much as I intended to!). As I reread my prayers from earlier in the week, I was drawn back into my loneliness, and just feeling a little bit lost.
I opened my Bible, and after some flipping around, found myself at Psalm 139, specifically verses 1-12. I memorized this passage ages ago, but it’s amazing how easy it is to forget the meaning behind the words. Read the whole thing, really, but I just want to highlight what caught my attention.
“You have searched me Lord, and you know me.”
A salve for a lonely heart.
I think especially as we’ve been preparing for marriage, I’ve gradually placed more and more mental responsibility on Stephen to be the one who knows me, who sees me, and who understands my heart. When I misunderstood something he was dealing with this week, I felt really hurt, upset that he didn’t understand what I needed. But, the extent to which I expected him to understand me (without direct communication) was selfish and unrealistic.
Something God really said to me on Wednesday, is that this crazy desire to be seen and known I’ve been discovering this week, is good. He made me that way. But, if I look to Stephen to fill that need for me, I will be disappointed. There is no possible way that he, as an entirely human man, will ever completely know my heart, and my thoughts. I’m really excited (and kind of terrified) to spend the rest of our lives building that knowing, but I’m finally figuring out that my need for intimacy is designed to draw me to God.
He knows me.
He built my heart with all of it’s fears, joys, desires and dark places. He sees it all, and loves it deeply. He sees my heart. The darkness that makes me broken and human are the corners from which He teaches me love, and shows me His healing power. He is the only one who will every truly know me, and I’ve been trying to fill that need from broken people.
I am still lonely, but He is teaching me, loving me, drawing me in. I am so thankful that I’ve got four more months to continue this journey before I marry Stephen. By building intimacy with my God, and learning to trust Him with all of me, I hope I will come to a place where I am a little more ready to be a wife, a place where I can fill my need with God’s presence, so that I can try to love Stephen selflessly and build a healthy, human intimacy with him.
I know I am definitely not alone in my loneliness. I hope that if you’ve been struggling with this, that you’ll allow God to begin speaking to your heart. Find those Psalms that proclaim His love for you, the way that He knows you. Meditate on them, speak them, cry them, whatever it takes for them to penetrate, and begin healing your hurt.