After seeing Jamal Miller’s Monday Motivation segment, within The One University’s program, entitled, “It ain’t supposed to feel good …” I was deeply inspired by two key points. First, during this December 3, 2018 Facebook Live broadcast, Jamal introduced the innovative and practical concept of taking inventory to assess what we need for every area of our lives to position ourselves for God’s plans. Secondly, he discussed the importance of not falling for the enemy’s attempts to cause doubt and distraction by reminding us of our pasts.
Eagerly and wholeheartedly in agreement, I started the process of taking inventory soon afterwards. However, while in the midst of this thought-provoking task, I was led to reflect further. In what other ways does the enemy try to distract us? My initial reflective thoughts then centered on the enemy’s attempts to stir up feelings of isolation when facing adversity.
Do you sometimes or often feel as though you’re the only one going through a specific life struggle? Is it hard to even fathom someone else experiencing what you are? If so, take inventory of the areas in your life (e.g., family, singleness, career, relationship, health) where churning thoughts and emotions lead you to believe you’re on an island all by yourself. Then be encouraged, because there is good news!
As an insightful tool, the Bible not only helps to reveal otherwise, but can help you overcome your feelings of isolation. At any time, you can start the process of discovering or diving further into God’s Word to note how stories about adversity during biblical times have stark similarities to the contemporary struggles of the 21st century. So much so, you can probably imagine the hashtags the men and women in the Bible would have used if social media existed back then. Here’s just a glimpse of a few compelling examples.
- Moses was born during a time when male Hebrew babies were senselessly being murdered. However, he was kept alive after being adopted (Exodus 2:1-10); later he struggled with his identity and sense of belonging (Exodus 2:11-22) prior to becoming a courageous leader. #HebrewLivesMatter #AdoptMePlease #WhoAmI?
- As opposed to being cyberbullied by someone cowardly hiding behind a computer screen, Hannah miserably endured being bullied and taunted directly to her face for years due to her inability to have children (1 Samuel 1:1-20). #StopTheBullying #BeingBulliedStinks #GodHasMyBack
- Forced against her will, Tamar was sexually assaulted after being lured and then raped by someone close to her. The traumatic and devastating incident was then buried within her own family immediately afterwards (2 Samuel 13:1-22). #NoMeansNo #MeToo
- David gave in to his lustful temptation towards a married woman named Bathsheba and became entangled in a twisted love triangle; he then orchestrated the killing of her unsuspecting husband after she became pregnant with his unborn baby as a result of the affair (2 Samuel 11:1-27). #LeadMeNotIntoTemptation #FleeFornication #HolinessIsStillRight
- Abram (later renamed Abraham) found himself caught in the middle of a stressful and tense relationship between his wife Sarai (later renamed Sarah), and Hagar (who was the mother of his first son). Due to the conflict, Hagar was eventually was sent away to survive on her own as a single mother, but God looked after Hagar and provided for her and her young son (Genesis 16:1-16, Genesis 21:8–21). #BabyMamaDrama #GodWillProvide
- Job was an honorable and God-fearing man whose faith was heavily tested when unimaginable and multiple tragedies suddenly struck just about every area of his life including his family, possessions, livelihood, and physical health (Job 1:1-22, Job 2:1-13). #WhenItRainsItPours #CantStopWontStop #BoldFaith
- Daniel had jealous colleagues who just didn’t like him and conspired against him for simply performing his job well while serving in his high-level position; despite their targeted efforts, Daniel received favor from God and continued to prosper (Daniel 6:1-28). #HatersMakeYouGreater #HeWillMakeATableInThePresenceOfYourEnemies
With numerous stories about relatable life struggles and challenges found throughout the Bible, you are bound to come across biblical men and women who share your same life experiences. Studying the lives of those in the Bible who strongly resonate with you can then lead to meditative reflection and questions. How did they react when facing your similar life struggle? In what ways did they display their faith? What lessons did they learn while persevering? How did God ultimately show up and deliver them?
As a result, you will be able to start the process of leveling up in any existing feelings of isolation with this liberating truth: You are not alone. Someone else has experienced — and overcome — your same struggle. There isn’t any problem, obstacle, or difficult life situation our sovereign God has not seen, allowed, or dealt with to lovingly ensure his bigger plan and purpose are accomplished. Confidently knowing this can also help you with shaping specific prayers for every area of your life to receive the comfort and deliverance you need to successfully conquer any misperception of isolation while on this journey to your destiny!
Cherie Trahan currently resides in Waldorf, Maryland and is a graduate of The One University. As a Christian author, poet, and inspirational speaker, it is Cherie’s lifelong goal to use her gift of writing to positively influence, engage, and inspire audiences with diverse backgrounds worldwide to help strengthen spiritual lives. Cherie has served as a featured guest for ministry events and Christian media outlets. Her literary works are deeply inspired by her strong spirituality and extraordinary real-life story of seven accumulated miracle blessings in the 21st century that speak to the power of faith. Follow along at www.purpose2inspire.com or on Twitter @PurposeWithSWAG