Learning from Loneliness
Three lessons from Genesis, Adam and Eve
"Then the Lord God said, 'It is not good the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.' So out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called every living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all the cattle, and the birds of the air, and ever beast of the field; but for the man there was not a helper fit for him."
- Genesis 2: 18-20
*Most thoughts have been inspired by David Hajduk's book, "God's Plan for You" from the Theology of hte Body for Young People Series.*
Sometimes I feel alone
My new favorite song has become "Never Let You Go" by a band called Manafest. The lyrics that really stuck out to me are these: When the parade goes by and you feel alone, never lose hope to sorrow. You're closer than you know."
Sometimes I feel alone. This doesn't occur just in being alone from human relationships, but also from a lack of emotional connection to God. A "dry spell" in my faith usually leaves me feeling like God isn't there.
It's not good to be alone
So I turn to Genesis for comfort - yes, I'm weird that way. But I really can sympathize with Adam. Here is is, alone in the world, and God sees this (because He sees everything). So God gives him...a cow. And a bird. And Adam sees these new creatures and begins to name them all. But even though he names and knows all these animals, there was not one who was like him. This brings us to lesson number one.
Lesson 1: Besides God, there is no other.
God should always be number one in our life. He is our creator, and we owe Him, as His creatures, complete love over all things.
Adam missed this. So God, by not giving Adam what he wanted right away, showed him that besides God, there is nothing else that matters.
If Adam wanted everything in his life to go smoothly, God had to be number one.
Lesson 2: Love requires knowing what is good
What is good and evil? This was the second lesson Adam had to learn. Enter the tree of knowledge of good and evil. God tells Adam he should not eat of the tree. By telling Adam this, God is basically saying that eating from the tree would be putting God last because the action would be disobedience to Him.
Our world is full of relative truth. "You do what you want to do, I'll do what I want to do." "You know, everyone has their own version of truth." "Well, this is what I believe, but I really don't want to impose my belief on you."
What happened to good, old-fashioned morality? Absolute truth has taken a back seat to moral relativism, and choosing our own way.
To do good, we have to know what is good. So, God was telling Adam that if he wanted to love Him, he had to obey what He tells him.
Lesson 3: People are different than animals
Adam had to realize why he had been put on the earth. So God puts many animals on the earth to surround him to show Adam that he was the only creation able to give and receive love.
"So," you think, "give him a girl!" But God shakes his head, smiles and creates a cow. A cow! Adam must have thought, "Gee, that's great. A cow. I was thinking something different, you know, someone like me?"
Do you think God looks pretty bad here? It's is like He is ignoring Adam's wish. But when God looks dumb, He's playing dumb.
What is the best teacher you've ever had? The one that didn't just give you the answer, but let you work towards the answer yourself. So God puts many creatures around Adam to prove that point that Adam is not just an animal.
Adam gets it. The more animals he named, the more he realized that he was different.
Funny thing about God - just when Adam was at his deepest valley of despair, and was feeling absolutely alone, God met his deepest desire, and it was so much better than Adam could have ever planned.
Even when you think you are alone....your not
Elisabeth Elliot talks about a time when she felt alone and seperated both from her relationship with Jim (her future husband) and from God. Her hint was this: Remember you aren't alone.
This seems so simple - yet it is a thought we often forget. We aren't alone. Deuteronomy 31:8 says. "The Lord, He it is that doth go with thee. He will not fail thee neither forsake thee. Be strong and of good courage."
It doesn't matter if you can't feel God by you. He is there with and will never leave you alone. Ever.
Have you hever felt alone? What do you do when you are in a dry spell in your life and you feel that God isn't there? Let me know in the comments!