John Alan Turner

Writer, Theologian, Consultant, Speaker, Teacher

Hole in My Heart

alone at sunset"We have all known the long loneliness, and we have learned that the only solution is love and that love comes with community." (Dorothy Day) In the beginning, when God was busy creating everything, there is a clear pattern to the Bible’s recording of the events. God spoke things into existence, examined them, and declared them: “Good”. Then, he would do it again.

Over and over this happens in the first pages of the Bible. God speaks, things appear, he examines them and says, “That’s good.” It's almost like a little song:

God speaks, and it is so. God saw that it was good. 

God speaks, and it is so. God saw that it was good. 

God speaks, and it is so. God saw that it was good. 

Over and over. Everything’s good — the sun, the moon, the stars, the oceans, the mountains, the birds, the animals -- everything is good -- until something isn’t.

Anyone remember the first thing about which the Bible says, “That’s not good”?

God surveys all of his magnificent creation and declares: “It’s not good for man to be alone.”

Think about this for a minute. This is before the Fall. Adam exists in unbroken fellowship with God. There is no sin, no shame, no separation. We would be tempted to have a conversation with Adam that looks like this:

US: What’s up with you, Adam?

ADAM: I'm not sure. I feel like something’s wrong.

US: Wrong? You're a perfect man living in a perfect world created by a perfect God with whom you have a perfect relationship. What could be wrong?

ADAM: I don’t know. Sometimes I just feel...I don't know...all alone?

US: Oh, Adam, don't you understand? As long as you have God, you’re never alone.

The problem with that conversation is that it is God himself who chooses the words in this portion of Scripture. And the words he chooses to describe a sinless Adam living in an unbroken relationship with his Creator at this point in time include “alone” and “not good”.

In other words (and I think I have borrowed this phrase from Gilbert Bilezekian), while there is a God-shaped hole in the human heart that no one else can fill, there is also a human-shaped hole in the human heart that not even God himself will fill.

One man, rightly related to God, with no experience of community, is not good. You were not only created to connect with your Creator; you were created for relationships with other human beings. Seeking something from humans that only God can give you is futile, but seeking something from God that he intends for you to find in community is equally futile.

My friend Tim Spivey once said, "Aside from the Holy Spirit, your circle of friends is more important than anything." Your friends will determine the direction and quality of your life. As Americans we value our independence, but the truth is we're interdependent and there's no getting around that. We need people. There's no shame in saying it. You're not meant to be alone.

Find your people. Seriously, if you don't have good people in your life, find some. Ask God to send them. Go look for some. Find some healthy people and ask them if you can join their circle. Stop pretending like you and God can do this alone. Even he knows better than that. You have a hole in your heart; go fill it.

 

Photo Credit: lee Scott