Have you ever wondered “what’s the deal with that guy/girl?” You know, that person that just doesn’t fit in. The really quiet guy that sits by himself at lunch or the girl that everyone secretly laughs at because she’s just so weird. Well, last night I was floored by the words of a young man in his early twenties.

“I don’t have a passion for life. I don’t have something in life that’s really… I’m glad to be alive today because…”

(click here to see John speaking)

John is what some people would call a nerd. He’s skinny and awkward looking, he has acne, he doesn’t have friends, he lives with his parents and he is very alone. Alone not because his parents ignore him or don’t love him but rather because he feels that’s all that loves him.

As I was watching John’s story unfold my son made the comment “what he needs is a girlfriend.” Instantly I was flooded with my memories of high school. It was as if I was looking in a mirror. No longer was I watching a story of some stranger, now it was me that they were talking about. I too was skinny and awkward. I didn’t have a lot of friends. I didn’t go to parties. I had a handful of girlfriends but never had any real relationships. I felt hollow. I remember praying to God to bring me a girl in my life and hating God when it didn’t happen. Sometimes I would question killing myself but the fear of going to hell prevented me. I was bitterly angry and it didn’t take much to set me off. The thing is YHWH did answer my prayers. He just chose to do it according to His time schedule not mine.

What hurt me the worst about John was that I know the pain he is feeling. Someone once said silence can be deafening, well, loneliness is like a silence of the heart and it is very powerful. John has a void in his life that if left unchecked could consume him but he’s really not alone. Sadly, most of us experience this void at some point in our lives. Some choose to fill the emptiness with drugs and alcohol, some use sex, some try to fill it with materialism, the list goes on and on. Yet, the solution has always been there right by our side, even when we choose to ignore Him. Simply put, the reason we feel hollow is because we are lacking a relationship with YAH.

V’ahavta lerei’acha kamocha, love your neighbor as yourself. Maybe if we just took the time to get to know someone we could make a difference in their life. Something as insignificant as simple conversation could make all the difference. A polite “hello” could be the answer someone needs.

As I grow closer to my Father, I have a new outlook on life. I truly enjoy a rich shalom, peace. Now when I look down that long, winding road instead of straining my eyes to see what lies ahead I just put one foot in front of the other and walk. John, I hope I get the chance to see you around the next curve.

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