THE PROMISE OF HIS PRESENCE – Lesson 5 – July 12 – 19

Would you be surprised to learn that the epidemic of loneliness in our country has become a very serious public health concern?  It has a very devastating effect on the well-being of people because of the lack of sleep, cognitive decline, depression, decreased energy and even pain.  Health experts say that isolation, the absence of social connection and the lack of quality relationships often causes the same reaction in the brain as physical pain.  The effect that modern technology is having, along with the increased number of people living by themselves and often far from their families, and the habits formed during the Covid era, are all contributing factors in the statistics which indicate that 1 out of every 2 people are now experiencing moderate to severe loneliness.  As you well know, loneliness is not a respecter of wealth, status, position, gender, or any particular asset.  No one is totally exempt.

Early in the history of the nation of Israel, God had His hand on a man named Joshua.  While we have no indication that Joshua struggled with loneliness, we also know that he made some choices which were not popular with others.  For example, when he and his companion, Caleb, were sent to explore the new land in Canaan (Numbers 13 and 14i), they were the only 2 out of the 12 spies who came back with a positive report.  “Let’s go because we can certainly do it!”  In this case, the majority were wrong and the results were disastrous.  Forty years later, as Joshua became the leader of the nation, once again he faced an enormous challenge, but the thing which gave him the courage he needed was God’s promise to him.  God made it very clear he should not be afraid or discouraged because He would be with him wherever he went.  God made it clear He would never leave him or forsake him.  He would always keep His promise.  Joshua could count 100% on God’s presence.

That very same God is The One who continues to say to His children, “I will be with you always, to the end of the age.”  It’s the best antidote to loneliness you can find anywhere and anytime – no matter what you are feeling!

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