PUTTING ON YOUR PEACEMAKER TOOLBELT.
Throughout our Peacemakers for the Cause of Christ blog/podcast series we offer you a number of short exercises and/or resources that will aid you in bringing this blog/podcast theme to life. Enjoy!
Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4: 9 (NIV)
Tool #9: An Exercise in Addressing Our Loneliness. Blog/Podcast 6.1
Today’s Lectio Divina: God said, “It’s not good for the Man to be alone; I’ll make him a helper, a companion.” Genesis 2: 18 (MsgB)
From the very beginning of time, God knew that it was not good for a man to be alone. And while this verse in today’s Lectio Divina is specifically written to address how and why our Creator made both male and female, I believe this truth about man’s aloneness also speaks volumes to how important it is that we human beings find peaceable ways to bring ourselves together before our divisions do us in. Simply said, alone we’re sunk, but together we can.
Isn’t it interesting, for example, that in the first two chapters of Genesis, there are eight created objects that God calls “good”?
- Light (Gen 1: 3-5)
- Land & Sea (Gen 1: 6-10)
- Vegetation & Water (Gen 1: 11-13 & Gen 2: 5-6)
- Sun, Moon & Stars (Gen 1: 14-19)
- Ocean-Dwelling & Air-Dwelling Creatures (Gen 1: 20-23)
- Earth-Dwelling Creatures (Gen 1: 24-25)
- Tree-Bearing Fruit (Gen 2: 8-9)
- Minerals from the Earth (Gen 2: 10-14)
Now, notice the one specific creation that God calls “very good”…
Man (Gen 1: 26-31)
But, as we keep reading, there’s only one thing that God labels “not good”…
When man is found by himself, isolated in our aloneness! (Gen 2: 18)
You see friends, you and I are not at our best (very good) when we keep to ourselves, separated from God’s creation, at odds with our fellow human beings, and isolated from intimate relationships. As I see it, this is where God’s in-breaking Kingdom work of rescue & reconciliation truly comes into play.
HERE’S A POSSIBLE EXERCISE IN ADDRESSING OUR LONELINESS…
Do a Lectio Divina (three or four slow reads through parts of Gen 1 – Gen 2: 18)
Reflect upon a time when you felt really alone. Write out, or journal your remembrances of that time. Now, being aware of your Heart/Head/Gut (the Ennegram’s descriptive way of identifying your Feelings/Thoughts/Body)…ask yourself these questions…
How did you feel during this time? Find words to describe your feelings/emotions.
What were your thoughts at this time? Write down a few of those things you were thinking.
How was your physical body responding at this time? Any physical remembrances?
Once you’ve recorded your answers, Walk slowly through these steps…
- Put your open hands (palms up) in front of you.
- With your imagination, place the good/bad/ugly of these moments; your feelings,thoughts & bodily remembrances; in your hands.
- Lift these moments up to the Lord by physically lifting your “filled” hands.
- Invite Jesus to join you in this moment.
- Use your imagination. Picture Jesus sitting with you, or taking a walk with you. How are your feelings/thoughts/body different with Jesus being there?
- Take some quiet, Holy Spirit time to see what Jesus might have to say or do as you join with Him with this remembrance time of loneliness.
Here’s a possible closing scriptures for this exercise:
Deuteronomy 31:6 (NIV) Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you.
Matthew 28: 20 (ESV) And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.
Look at this amazing list of other scriptures: www.everydayservant.com/top-18-bible-verses-god-will-never-leave-us/
Close in prayer, asking Jesus to join with you, going forward.