The Loneliness of Suffering and Service

by | Sep 6, 2011 | Purpose & Identity

Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, “Sit here while I go over there and pray.” … and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, “My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” —Matthew 26:36-38

There is the loneliness of suffering—in sickness, when you are ill and alone, with no one to take care of you. When you are in a deep valley or trial, no one to talk to, what must it be like? Perhaps you have a particular type of suffering or illness, weakness or trial that no one has had but you. You look high and low for some other person who will know exactly what you are going through. You feel so lonely.

That is where Jesus comes in. There is not a single temptation that you can have that He doesn’t understand. He sympathizes; He never lectures. You may go to another person, and he may say, “Oh, are you bothered about that?” And you just feel awful that you even went to him in the first place. You then look for one other person, and sometimes you won’t find that other person or he just doesn’t understand how you feel. But Jesus does. Is this your thorn in the flesh?

There is loneliness when you have to make decisions or a judgment that isn’t going to be appreciated. And so you can be in ministry, doing the Lord’s work, but nobody appreciates what you are doing. No one is going to do it but you, and they take you for granted.

Perhaps you have taken a courageous stand, but no one understands. Listen to Paul: “At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them” (2 Tim. 4:16). There are those missionaries who have left family and friends. They have gone to an alien country, away from familiar surroundings. The loneliness of service. There is the loneliness of doing things in your own church. Nobody knows you do it, but God knows.

Excerpted from The Thorn in the Flesh (Charisma House, 2004).

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

How Do You Leave a Church That Becomes Toxic?

How Do You Leave a Church That Becomes Toxic?

Two weeks ago, I shared several practical guidelines on how to leave a church gracefully. I wrote this because I hear so many stories about people storming out of churches because their feelings got hurt. But one astute reader didn’t appreciate my observations because...

Prophetic Word: There Will Be a Day of Reckoning

Prophetic Word: There Will Be a Day of Reckoning

“Behold, the day of the LORD comes, cruel, with both wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate; and He will destroy its sinners from it. For the stars of heaven and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its going forth, and...

How You Can Plead the Blood of Jesus in the Courts of Heaven

How You Can Plead the Blood of Jesus in the Courts of Heaven

You have an enemy. His goal is to keep you from entering a covenant relationship with God. However, once you do, his goal changes. He wants to make you doubt your identity, doubt God’s ability and keep you from walking in your purpose. He changes his accusations...

Why God Will Sometimes Hesitate to Give Your Mountain

Why God Will Sometimes Hesitate to Give Your Mountain

Recently, I was having a discussion over coffee with a group of friends when one of them asked the question: “Can you believe how much the world has changed in what seems to be a very short time?” My answer was: “Yes. Yes, I have no problem believing how much the...

8 Reasons for You to Speak in Tongues

8 Reasons for You to Speak in Tongues

If a person were to ask, “Why speak in tongues?” couldn’t we also ask, “Why pray?” The Word of God shows a definite value in praying with an unknown tongue. Jesus tells us that “it is necessary always to pray” (Luke 18:1, MEV). Later, in speaking of prayer, Paul...

What ‘The Jetsons’ and Cindy Jacobs Prophetically Got Right

What ‘The Jetsons’ and Cindy Jacobs Prophetically Got Right

Just as the 1960s cartoon The Jetsons depicted a future full of video phones, robotics and Google-style office space, some modern-day prophets have prophesied about a future full of exposing corruption, fighting for individual freedom and shining a light on truth. One...

The Blueprints for Building a Powerful and Abundant Life for Jesus

The Blueprints for Building a Powerful and Abundant Life for Jesus

Have you ever seen blueprints? If not, blueprints are detailed drawings, containing specifications approved by the builder of a home. A blueprint fully outlines the quality of the materials needed to build a stable and trustworthy home. For a Christian, the Bible is...

9 Reasons Why God Never Tries to Prove His Existence

9 Reasons Why God Never Tries to Prove His Existence

God is self-authenticating. He never tries to prove His existence because it is already evident through the created order. Since He is the only objective being, all other living and nonliving objects emanate from His creative fiat word hence all reasoning (different...

RECENT ARTICLES

Dutch Sheets Prophesies: The Evil Plans of the Wicked Will Boomerang Back

The events of last week have shocked many Americans. While my responsibility and calling is not to defend individuals or political parties, it is worth pointing out that what the Left did on 8/8,...
How Prophetic Evangelism Is Impacting Change in Today’s Culture

How Prophetic Evangelism Is Impacting Change in Today’s Culture

Dr. Candice Smithyman, host of Manifest His Presence on the Charisma Podcast Network, recently interviewed apostle Stacey Campbell, founder of Shiloh Global about how prophecy can impact today’s culture. Apostle Campbell is passionate about teaching young people and...

Prophetic Vision: Three Tables Are Set

Prophetic Vision: Three Tables Are Set

Recently as I was worshipping the Lord, I went into a vision where I could see I was in a dark and very deep valley. It was nighttime, and the valley was surrounded by tall mountains. On the top of each I could see the outlines of men and instinctively knew they were...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]