What I Learned in Loneliness

What I Learned in Loneliness Hero Image What I Learned in Loneliness Hero Image

“Sometimes, when things are going great, you can forget to rely on the Lord. But I’m learning that it’s the hard times that often help us grow closer to Him.

“I am so thankful that I was blessed to grow up in a Christian home and that I’ve had a foundational faith since I was really little. I accepted Christ when I was five, and thankfully, I have not wandered far from God. For most of my life, I had it very easy.

“My family always had a lot of good friends, and we had a very close community where we lived in Nevada. But when I was 13, we moved to Dallas, and I found myself in an unfamiliar situation.

“It was hard to be the new kid. I felt overlooked and in the shadows. I would see things on social media and feel left out, sad, unimportant, and lonely. I learned that comparison can destroy a person’s confidence and feelings of acceptance. To make matters worse, the next year, COVID happened, and everyone was forced into a period of isolation.

“As a young teenager, this was really challenging, and I began to question why we moved. Why would the Lord take me from an amazing situation? Our community in Nevada seemed so good for me, and it didn’t seem right. Bitterness took over my thoughts.

“Through conversations with my mom, she constantly reminded me that I needed to focus on God’s faithfulness and goodness, even in the hardest of times. We discussed Proverbs 3:6, which says, ‘In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.’ As a family, we had prayed for His will about where to live and go to school so we could rest assured that we were on the path He wanted us on.

“It was at this same time that my family started attending Watermark, and I started serving with Watermark Kids. Getting plugged into the church gave me a place to build authentic relationships that honored the Lord in new ways.

“I also really started learning more of God’s Word through Join the Journey, Watermark’s daily Bible reading plan. Spending time studying the Bible was the way I connected with the Lord and learned about His character. Instead of focusing on my isolation, I focused on the fact that I had God and that He could get me through anything.

“Through my experience, I believe God was teaching me to look after new people. Years later, The Lord has now graciously answered my prayers of loneliness and blessed me with a new community, but I know from experience what it’s like to be new and feel like everyone else has a ton of friends. The Lord showed me that I can be a light to others to show them how much He loves them. One of my favorite verses is 1 John 4:19: ‘We love because he first loved us.’

“God always showed me His love; when it felt like I didn’t have much, He taught me He was enough. He is the ultimate example of how to love, and it’s my mission to love others now, too.

“Over the years, I’ve loved serving at this church and being discipled and poured into by the people of Watermark. My friends and leaders in Watermark Students have helped me become more spiritually disciplined. For a while, I struggled to find consistency in reading the Bible, but having a community that checks in with me and holds me accountable has been so helpful. Just being in the presence of people who love the Lord brings true joy!

“Through a period of loneliness, God was working to develop compassion and empathy in me so I could help other people feel welcome and loved. God taught me the joy that can be found in serving others through Watermark Kids and through reaching out to other students in my school. And finally, He filled me with hope and continues to sustain me as I use my time to read His Word and get to know Him better.

“We’ve all experienced periods of loneliness or other trials, and we can choose to become bitter with our circumstances, or we can become better by surrendering our lives to Christ. I’ve learned that if I lean into God, He will do His refining work and make me who He wants me to be.”

DTown, Watermark’s in-town retreat for students in grades 6-12 is happening on February 9 and 10. This is an opportunity for students to have fun, make memories, and learn more about having a relationship with Jesus. Join me and hundreds of other students for an awesome weekend! Register today.