Trusting Loneliness

I do not like to be alone.  Alone.

Even the sound, the sight of that word causes my insides to hollow out, and panic to rise bitter in my throat.  The thought of being alone causes my back to become rigid with fear.  Until recently, alone, solitude, loneliness was not something that I would intentionally create.  I am afraid of loneliness.  Afraid that loneliness brings illumination to those areas of my being that I wish to keep pressed down, smothered by activity and distraction.  Afraid of what light loneliness might shed on the cob-webbed corners of my heart,  of what ugly mess and filth a shaft, of brilliance might uncover.  Charles Ringma in his book, Dare to Journey: with Henri Nouwen, sums up all of my fears with this: “We are often afraid to be alone.  Afraid of what we may discover about ourselves when we stop long enough to be still.”  Do I dare stop?

Being alone, allowing myself to actually press finger to pulse of my being means that I have to trust.  Trust.  Now there is another word that that causes me to catch my breath, causes me a moment of discomfort.  Trust requires a yearning, a desire to move beyond what I myself can control.  It requires that I move beyond the confines of my vision and recognize that there is Someone that exists to coax me past the shadows of my own doubts.  

So how do you dance the dance of loneliness and move to a place where trust casts out fear? 

Trusting the stillness, the quiet, often moves me to a place of restlessness that does not allow me to settle body or spirit.  What if too much is revealed?  What if too much pain pursues me?  What if too much?  What if too much?    What if I am unable, unable to move beyond the boundaries and limitations of my own mind and recognize that I need to just wait.  Wait and trust.  “But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them” (Psalm 5:11).  Trust, my lips silently mouth the word, and when I look deep I find it is from the Hebrew – Chocah – to flee for protection, to confide in – to have hope, make refuge – Trust. 

On those days when it is hard, when life is hard, when  work is stomping its impatience, when my mother heart is weary and bedraggled – when all of life  has caught up with me and is demanding each step, each action, I will, just for a moment, lose sight of my Saviour.  The blindness of worry, fear, mistrust and loneliness cloud my vision and there is no refuge – just mess, ugly heaps of mess.  When life hits hard I must remember Chocah -this is my hope, this is my refuge – this is my fleeing place.  This is where God will meet me, in my stillness, in my silence – Alone.  He will meet me and remind me that I am never really alone.  I am but fleeing, hiding under His wing,  protected until I find  joy in thanksgiving.

Hope.  Refuge.  Trust.


  1. Hi Tonya,

    Your post resonated with me : I have struggled with trusting God, and I love Henri Nouwen’s words…Thanks for sharing so honestly…my post today talked about trusting God…linked up behind you at Ann’s blog..Blessings to you.

  2. I am so glad you were able to find peace in my words. Thank you for stopping by… I can’t wait to read your post. I love how God uses us to minister to one another in this awesome journey of joy. Tonya.

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