“The last word in lonesome is ME.” Do you remember that Roger Miller country song from the '60s? It was singer Eddy Arnold that made it famous in bars and dance halls all over America. Amazingly, many lonely people made that song their sorrowful anthem.
Times have changed, but loneliness continues to stalk our main streets and back alleys. A recent poll by YouGov has uncovered some alarming statistics among Americans in the 21st Century. Twenty seven percent of Millennials said that they had no close friends. Millennials are defined as individuals between the ages of 23 and 38. You would think that this age group would be very social and community oriented. Or, maybe they are simply lost in their social media.
The next nearest age with a high rate of loneliness encompasses those over the age of 75. The elders often experience social isolation due to the loss of aged friends. We can better understand the loneliness of the elderly rather than the loneliness of the young adults. However, loneliness can capture anyone of any age.
Some medical professionals have postulated that loneliness can lead to high blood pressure and fatal heart disease. In other words, being lonely can literally break your heart! What can we do to remedy loneliness?
In Psalm 25, King David was caught in the grasp of loneliness. If anyone knew popularity and wealth, David did. And yet, even in his amazing success, David was mired in loneliness. In verse 16, he speaks of feeling “desolate.” To be desolate means that you feel deserted by all others. A forsaken person often supposes that no one understands his dilemma, and even worse, that no one cares.
When people think they have been abandoned, their lifestyle can become erratic. They may turn inward, and isolate themselves from others. Or, they may exhibit a rebellious boldness and vent their anger in a dangerous manner. Their loss of relationship with others, causes society to suffer, too.
This is why Jesus came to earth. He saw the need of helpless humanity to find relationship with God and each other. Through the teachings of Christ, we realize that without God, we are hopeless. That’s why the nations of the world quarrel and squabble over land, water, and prominence. Without a relationship with God, humans turn against each other. Their natural desires are contrary to the desires of God.
But we have hope today. No one will be left behind when we embrace the love of God and the Salvation that is offered through the Work of Christ on the Cross. This is good news for the lonely. Natural friends may walk away. But Jesus has promised to never leave or forsake you (Hebrews 13:5-6).
If you are lonely today, come to Jesus. Remember: The last word in Jesus is US.