“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deut. 31:8 NIV)

Sometimes I admit, I’m just lonely. I live alone; I often work alone; it seems that no-one understands the reasons I can’t do things, the things that make me different; no-one else seems to have the same health issues; or the same reaction to treatments.

Occasionally, there are people who try to come alongside and understand what life is for me, but people don’t always say the right things, sometimes they don’t even understand what the problem is. Family can let you down, when you feel they should be supporting, or helping , when they don’t even understand why you feel left out. Even our Christian friends and our Churches sometimes don’t understand how cut off and “different” we can feel.

Its hard to explain to someone else, why I feel alone – maybe there seem to be people around, or maybe they just think I need to “snap out of it” or look at all the things I have to be grateful for, even consider what someone else is going through that is worse than my situation.

People can make us feel its not OK to talk about how we are struggling. They may not intend to hurt us, but sometimes they do, maybe they just don’t understand.

When life feels lonely, there is someone who understands me, someone who longs to come alongside and encourage me. There is someone who wants me to know that I’m never alone – He promises to never leave me.

God understands when I feel discouraged, when I feel lonely, when I feel like no-one else understands what I’m going through.

Its OK to tell God how I feel – He will not turn away from me, rather He will draw me closer and let me know He cares and understands. And the next time I feel lonely or discouraged, He will still be there, waiting with outstretched arms.

Fiona Burrows lives in Melbourne, Australia. She is thankful for the difference God makes in her life as she lives with chronic pain. She enjoys finding time for writing, travel and photography.