Sunday 10th May – Combatting loneliness in a time of lockdown

Reflections on 1 Corinthians 6:19 by Rev’d Rod Elston

Combatting loneliness in a time of lockdown

I have been aware, as no doubt many of you have, of just how much we have hitherto depended upon other people’s company. We all have friends whom we perhaps call upon or meet weekly at church and so the current lockdown regulations have seriously curtailed our interaction with our fellow human beings.

Emails or phone calls or even Facetime for those of you who are technically minded are all very well but they are not really an adequate substitute for actually meeting with folk are they?

And yet the Bible frequently reminds us that God is constantly with us and indeed dwells within us through the power of His Holy Spirit.

That is what Paul is reminding the church in Corinth of in this passage of Scripture.

“Don’t you know he says “that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God?”

This is important for us to remember in these times of loneliness when we can so easily feel alone and neglected by those whom we thought were our friends and companions.

We are reminded that God has a plan and a purpose for us and that we cannot possibly hope to carry out our part of the plan unless we have the power of God’s Holy Spirit within us. Phil 2:13 tells us that “God is always at work in you to make you willing and able to obey his own purpose.”

When we begin to doubt our importance to God then we must learn to listen to the quiet words of assurance that the Holy Spirit is able to give us if we ask Him. John 14:26 “The Helper will teach you everything and help you to remember all that I have told you”.

He dwells within us to help us bring our minds and lives into harmony with God’s will. We are not expected to learn this stuff all by ourselves, on the contrary the Holy Spirit comes into our hearts so that He might reproduce within us the mind and character of Jesus Christ himself. Galatians 5:16 implores us to “let the Spirit direct your lives” It is by this means that we are continually being taught the things of Christ and his will for us because He wants to empower us for effective service.

Finally, the Holy Spirit helps us to have an effective prayer life if we learn to co-operate with Him and this is what helps us to become everything that our God made us for.

So, in these unusual and unprecedented times as we are learning to be church in a very different way then let us remember that our God has promised that He will never leave us or forsake us and that He will be with us even to the end of days.