When was the last time you went to the movie theater alone? What about going to a restaurant by yourself? Can you relate to the words profoundly uncomfortable and self-conscious? It feels like every other person in the place notices you, which multiplies your conspicuousness.
The thought of going alone to a social gathering can be paralyzing. Many single people experience aloneness anxiety in social situations. However, I am of the opinion that married people who attend social events alone, experience singleness anxiety, as well as feelings of, hurt, disappointment, and sadness. We also feel cheated! So why is it so difficult?
We are created to be social beings (Geneses 2:18) . From the time we are small, in most instances, we have lived in community with one another, parents, siblings, and friends. We then marry and become a couple. Our need for social interaction and validation stems from our Godly design (relationship) and our childhood experiences of community.
What I like to call coupledom is reinforced in our society through so many social activities. Two-ticket give-a-ways, two seats at the amusement park, there are many, many activities designed for two. Unfortunately, this is also true in our local church.
Many activities seem geared for couples, families, young people, or older people. Married adults who are not joined at church by their partner feel left out. Socializing with couples is hard because we feel out-of-place with out our mate by our side. Attending church alone is one of the bravest endeavors for a spiritually single person. We feel alone even when we are surrounded by people.
So how do we combat the loneliness and arrive at church with the right attitude? How do we rise above the grief when seated behind a happy couple in the sanctuary? What do we do with the thoughts of inflicting bodily harm on the lump under the covers on Sunday morning???
I have some real and practical suggestions to offer that have been so effective in my life. I want to share them tomorrow. I would like to hear from you. What do you do to combat some of the feelings this post evokes??
Share your voice, heart and love in the comments.
Marching Around Jericho is a spiritual guide. As you read through the pages, powerful and transformative instruction and equipping takes place. We follow Jesus as he leads us around the walls, imparting kingdom truths with each passing, finally arriving at the gates of the walled-off city, our spouse’s unbelieving heart. After the circles in prayer are complete, we arrive fully prepared to command the walls to crumble and be removed, making a way for our spouse to step from the rubble of lies and captivity, into faith and freedom!