Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt. And he cometh unto the disciples, and findeth them asleep, and saith unto Peter, What, could ye not watch with me one hour? ~Matthew 26:36-40

Loneliness is no fun. And all of us can admit that we’ve dealt with feeling lonely in our years on this earth. I have a 25 year-old son, Jonathan, and he has struggled with loneliness and rejection for a lot of his life (and I am using his example with his permission). When he was in school, he was often picked on because of his speech. He learned to fight back, and in time, found some truly great friends that have stood the test of time. Now that he is an adult, he has achieved much success: he earned an associate’s degree in Criminal Justice, earned certifications, bought his own house, works a great, full-time job at a university, and just adopted an adorable puppy. Yet, he admitted to me recently how much he struggles with loneliness.

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He has a vast network of friends (from Michigan and new friends here in North Carolina), but when it comes to finding a special young lady to spend the rest of his life with, he says he’s striking out. For the month of May, Jonathan felt led to pray and fast about this struggle of his. He sought the Lord and read the Bible. He started taking better care of himself and increased working out and eating healthy. By the time June hit, Jonathan admitted (a couple weeks in) that this strong feeling of loneliness would descend upon him to where he’d get emotional. I tried to encourage him that God was always with him, and that He knew the desires of his heart. But God’s timing is not our timing. Jonathan agreed and said he understands, but he doesn’t know what to do when that sadness of being alone falls on him.

This past weekend, he called me and was crying. “What’s wrong?” I asked in concern.

“I had a dream, mom. I had a vivid dream. I think God spoke to me. I woke up crying and praying.”

I asked him to tell me the dream. With his permission, I’m sharing with you: He was in a garden, and he heard someone weeping and talking. He followed the cries, and he saw Jesus kneeling in the midst of the garden, sobbing and praying. Jonathan said he rushed over to him and fell on his knees and hugged him. “I love you,” he told Jesus. “You’re not alone. I’m here.” Together, they wept.

After Jonathan relayed the dream to me, I understood what it meant. “Jonathan, do you realize that when Jesus was in the garden, that was probably the most alone he ever felt? He knew what was coming. He knew what had to be done, but even his closest friends could not stand beside him and support him during this soul-crushing moment.” God revealed this to Jonathan in a dream, letting him know that we are not the only ones who have experienced loneliness. Jesus did too.

I want to encourage each of you reading this that you are not alone. Loneliness is real, and I get that, but we truly have an advocate in Jesus. Turn in Him in those moments. Lean on Him when you’re struggling with sadness. And let’s lean on each other, friends.

I hope my son’s testimony blessed you. Let me know in the comments.