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Watch 2022-2023 online sermons » Joyce Meyer » Joyce Meyer - Goodbye Loneliness

Joyce Meyer - Goodbye Loneliness

Joyce Meyer - Goodbye Loneliness
TOPICS: Talk It Out, Loneliness
Joyce Meyer - Goodbye Loneliness

Ginger Stache: Hi, friends. Thanks for tuning in to "Enjoying Everyday Life". You know, loneliness is something that we can all relate to. And today, Joyce, Erin Cluley, and I are saying, "Goodbye, loneliness," with God's help, and relationship expert, Love McPherson, who we love so much. So, whether you're feeling lonely in your marriage, in your family, or in a crowd of people, you're going to want to join this conversation. Some really practical help, some encouragement from God's word, today may be just what you need.

Ginger Stache: Hi friends, this is the talk it out podcast and we need you in here because we've got a lot to talk about today. And one of the great things about being one of the girls here on talk it out is that you're never lonely. That's one of the things that we're talking about today is how we all need community, and we need relationship. And one of the best places, in fact, the only place that you can get it and not be let down is in Christ. So, I'm Ginger stache with Erin Cluley, Joyce Meyer. And today we have our friend back with us, relationship expert, Love McPherson. Love, thank you so much for being here.

Love McPherson: Thank you all for having me. I love it when I'm here.

Ginger Stache: We do too. We absolutely do. Love, love, love, love.

Ginger Stache: There's so much love. There's love all over this room. If you wanna check out some of the other episodes because love has been with us before and it's been so great. She talked about anxiety. She talked about relationships before. So, go to joycemeyer.Org and find those other shows and check them out. But as I said, today, we're talking about loneliness. And one of the reasons that we wanted to do this topic is it's one that we get a lot of people commenting on. And often because they do appreciate the feeling of being part of this group. Like we're doing a Bible study together and that means so much to us that they trust us, you know, to come in and that we're all friends together. And we all need that so much.

Erin Cluley: I think there's something also to the fact that a lot of times as Christian women, you may feel like you can't talk about certain topics because it's not approved in the church or whatever, but we're all dealing with it. So, to know that we're willing to have those hard conversations I think is really important. I was looking actually on our social media and jmar7773 said, "I have struggled, been tormented by and haunted by loneliness my whole life". So, if that's just one comment of the many of our friends, this is a really important topic.

Ginger Stache: Yeah, tormented and haunted by it.

Erin Cluley: Aren't those big words?

Ginger Stache: And the thing about loneliness is I think sometimes we can toss it off. You know, it's not the same as a trauma in your life. But loneliness can be very detrimental, and studies show that, don't they?

Love McPherson: They absolutely do. As a matter of fact, a lot of times, loneliness can be the result of the trauma in your life. Because loneliness has been associated with low-trusters, people who don't trust. And a lot of times, low trust comes from the traumas, childhood traumas, things that we see as threats in our lives. And so, it actually can, actually work against itself because the more you don't trust someone, the more you will isolate yourself. And so, when you say that the people feel connected here, it's because they trust the ministry. They trust what you're saying, and you've, you know, done what it takes to make them feel accepted, wanted, and heard. Because one of the things about loneliness, the opposite is this: it's the result of not feeling seen, heard, understood enough. So, when people are vulnerable enough to let you in, and you handle it correctly, that's actually one of the cures for loneliness.

Ginger Stache: Wow. What you said is really valuable because it does become like a vicious cycle. "I'm lonely and I've learned not to trust people..."

Love McPherson: Yes.

Ginger Stache: "So, I push them away. But I need them, so I try to draw them in, and then I push them away because I'm afraid of being hurt". So, there are a lot of habits that we need to change in order to get out of some of our loneliness as well.

Joyce Meyer: You know, loneliness is not always about being alone.

Love McPherson: That's right.

Erin Cluley: Oh, absolutely.

Joyce Meyer: You can be in a whole room full of people and feel lonely.

Love McPherson: That's right.

Joyce Meyer: Especially if you're insecure. Seems like sometimes if you're insecure and you don't feel good about yourself, you're always imagining that other people are not liking you and pushing you away. And so, you can be alone, totally alone and not be lonely. Or you can be with a dozen people and still feel lonely.

Erin Cluley: I'm glad you said that because when I was thinking about this topic, I had that thought, "I wonder if this all goes back to like my own insecurity or my competence in myself". So, thank you for confirming.

Joyce Meyer: You're welcome.

Erin Cluley: That is part of it. It's how I see myself. And then you... I can spiral. And when I feel alone, then I can spiral into more of those thoughts.

Joyce Meyer: I think there's people who feel lonely because they have some of these issues that we're talking about. But then, I thought this morning about the elderly. Maybe people that don't have children or their children just don't really pay any attention to them anymore, or shut-ins, people that can't get out. And...

Ginger Stache: People who are grieving the recent loss of someone close to them.

Joyce Meyer: People that are sick. You know, there's probably people watching right now from the hospital or their bed at home. And you know, that can be a lonely place. And you can feel, I think sometimes when you're sick or you're in great pain, you can really feel like nobody understands what you're going through and that does make you feel lonely. Like you said, Love, when you feel that you're not understood. I know even for me sometimes I have felt like, you know, nobody really understands my responsibility level. Nobody really understands what I'm doing. And there's something about us. We want to know that somebody understands. And so, I love Hebrews 4 that says we have "A high priest who understands". So, he always understands us. And you know...

Ginger Stache: Such a comfort.

Joyce Meyer: That's such a comfort to know that Jesus gets me.

Ginger Stache: Well, you are leading us right into the clip that we want to show of you teaching right now. Because we're gonna start, in fact, Joyce is talking about 2 Timothy 4:16 and talking about some of her own experience with loneliness.

Joyce Meyer: Let's look at 2 Timothy, chapter 4, verse 16. "At my first trial", now, this is the apostle Paul, "At my first trial no one acted in my defense [as my advocate] Or took my part or [even] Stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them"! Well, that's another whole message right there. "Everybody let me down, God forgive 'em," mmm... "But the Lord stood by me," the one person who didn't leave him was the Lord. "And he strengthened me". Wow. Now, you know, there's good stuff going on in here today, in the spiritual realm, you need to reach out with your faith and take some of this. Don't just sit there like a bump in the chair going, "But the Lord strengthened me". I love it.

Now, the second thing I wanna say to you this morning is when you feel lonely, or if you have a problem with loneliness, and I might just throw out to you for your information that that's probably one of the things that I have had to confront and deal with a lot in my life. So, how can you be in front of as many people as I am and ever be lonely? Well, because it's just different. You know, most of the people I deal with, they're coming to receive something. And when it's all over, there's still just me. You know? And sometimes, I want somebody not to be interested in "Joyce meyer," but to just be interested in plain, old Joyce. Amen? And I have lots of good friends, and you know, my husband is great. My family's great. And I've worked my way through a lot of that. But I believe that loneliness is something that the enemy attacks us with. He wants us to feel isolated and alone and like nobody cares.

And so, what I'm sharing with you today, are ways that I have developed myself to not let the devil do that to me. And one of the things I practice, on a regular basis, is being consciously aware and even saying out loud, "God is with me". Amen? Some of the loneliest people in the world are some of the movie stars, some of the music stars. You could have a widow living alone in an apartment that doesn't see hardly anybody very often and she could not be lonely, and have somebody that's in front of a gazillion people and they feel lonely. How many of you ever experience loneliness in your life and you...? So, see, interesting. I don't see hardly any hands that aren't up. Now, the next thing I'm gettin' ready to tell you is really big, so are you ready?

All right. One of the other things, and this is another thing that I've learned that really helps me. You don't have to be lonely if you know how to be with yourself. Because you are there all the time. You don't ever go away. Do you ever think of that? You can't get away from yourself, not for one second in your whole life. Everywhere you go, there you are. Now, if you don't like yourself, then you're in for a tough ride. So, you know, I started out full of self-hatred and guilt, and I've come to the point where I'm really fairly fond of myself. Matter of fact, I really get along better with me than anybody.

Ginger Stache: Joyce, I think it's so important that you bring this up because there's a tendency to feel guilty when you're lonely. Like, "Poor, pitiful me," like, "Why do I push people away"? Or "What's wrong with me"? And there really should be no shame in this because as you said at the conference, everybody put their hand up. We've all been there, and we will all be there, probably again at some point in our life. So, what you're saying about understanding that we really are never alone, to be able to be okay with who we are, is so vastly important.

Joyce Meyer: I'm going to Branson next week. It's a couple hundred miles from st. Louis. And I'm going totally by myself for seven days. And I am so looking forward to it. Not because I don't like people, but I just want seven days to just do what I wanna do when I want to do it, get up when I wanna get up, not have to work out with my trainer for three days that week.

Ginger Stache: Nobody will tell your trainer where you're going.

Joyce Meyer: I told him this morning: his name is rick. And I said, "Rick, you know how much we love appreciate you". But I said, "I have to admit, some mornings when I wake up and I'm sleeping so good, and I think, 'oh, no, I got to work out today.'" but nobody wants to be by themselves all the time. By the time I'm there six, seven days, I'll certainly be ready to come back home. But we need to be comfortable with ourselves because there's a problem too, if you have to be around somebody all the time, or if you have to always have noise going on around you all the time. But one of the things I wanna see us do today, and I'm sure you have it planned, in addition to talking about people being lonely, we wanna talk about ways that you can overcome that or avoid it.

Ginger Stache: Absolutely. I've found myself being exactly where you're talking about, because I am one of those people who loves the party. You know, I don't wanna miss out on anything.

Erin Cluley: Fomo Ginger. We have that, don't we?

Ginger Stache: Exactly. So, it's easy for me to depend on other people and to need that for my energy or... And if I'm faced with not having people around, or especially, feeling like somebody doesn't want me around, then that can be really hard for me. And I've really had to learn how God can use that in my life, that time that I'm just with him. And I've even seen him set people away from me, at times, because he needed that time with me. And I needed other people out of the way. You don't know that when it's happening. And you're like, "God, why am I lonely? These people who used to be here are no longer here"? And that has really helped me to understand that "I'm starting to grow closer to Christ. I feel better".

Joyce Meyer: Exactly.

Ginger Stache: I still love people. It doesn't change who I am.

Love McPherson: Yes.

Ginger Stache: But we learn how to adapt to situations.

Love McPherson: You know, one of the things I loved is the seven days away, yes, that's beautiful. I love that. Because solitude is different from loneliness.

Joyce Meyer: Right.

Love McPherson: Solitude is being by yourself. But in order to grow enough and heal enough, to be by yourself and be okay with it, you have to be okay with what's on the inside of you. Because you are talking to yourself 24/7. You have 70,000 thoughts a day. And if your thoughts are not right, and you don't like, you don't want the trauma to show up and say, "Hey, guess what? We're over here". If all of that is haunting you, then you will separate yourself and you will be the one who abandons you. Because there's two proximities that the Bible talks about. He says, "I will never leave you nor forsake you". The forsake is, "I won't allow Satan to speak into my ear and turn my heart against you". So, in marriage, which 60% of marriages, people who are married, report that they're lonely. So, we will forsake ourselves. We will feel forsaken, emotionally disconnected, and also physically disconnected. That's the people who are alone and maybe not with family members. But what we have to do, we have to stay connected with ourselves where we can actually feel and heal.

Erin Cluley: Could you have done seven days by yourself years ago? Like before you walked through all this with God in your life.

Joyce Meyer: Oh, I kind of do that on a semi-regular basis.

Erin Cluley: But before you had such healing with God, in you're, over these 40 years of ministry, after you had experienced all that trauma as a kid.

Joyce Meyer: Well, I was by myself a lot, but I didn't care for it.

Erin Cluley: Sure. Yeah, that makes sense.

Joyce Meyer: 'cause I was, you know, was married to my first husband. He had left me and disappeared. Or, you know, I was going through some kind of trauma in my life. You know, when I was pregnant, and I was alone, and you know, didn't really have anybody to help me or to help take care of me. And so, most of those times were traumatic times in my life. And certainly not ones where I enjoyed being alone. And I did experience a lot of loneliness. And interestingly enough, you know, I worked at a church for five years. And I was with a group of people all the time, the leaders in the church. And we did all kinds of things together, had meetings, prayed together, went on retreats together. Well, then, when God called me away from that, and to start Joyce Meyer Ministries, my ministry's been a lot on the road. And so, I went from having that group of people to being by myself a lot. And one of the things that really was a problem for me for a few years was this loneliness, you know, because I was by myself, and didn't really have anybody to... You know, you can't go tell your problems to the people you're ministering to.

Erin Cluley: Right, right.

Joyce Meyer: And so, I'm glad that God helped me get over that and the more I learned to like myself and the closer I became to him, the easier it got, and...

Love McPherson: Can I ask you somethin' Joyce? Because, I remember when you started out with your ministry and things like that. I would imagine, and I might be incorrect, I would imagine a part of a loneliness was, your ministry was so different from the other ministries out there in that, a lot of times, when we're even teaching faith and things like that, we go all the way to the end. "And this is what happened," we show all of the treasures, and the symbols of our faith, but we don't talk about the process a lot of times. And, you know, people don't wanna eat the sausage when they see how it's made. But you showed how it was made.

Joyce Meyer: Right.

Love McPherson: You understand? You talked about yourself. There weren't a lot of people, especially women out there, being as transparent as you. And it seems like when you, you know, tread that, you don't really have a lawn mower, you're that sickle. You know what I'm sayin'? And when you have that sickle, you can feel lonely. And I'm just wondering, in ministry, for people who are treading waters that were not traditional in the church, is there loneliness in that?

Joyce Meyer: I think anytime that you're "Different," that you're doing something a little out of the box, the devil can attack you with that loneliness because you are aware that not everybody approves of what you're doing. But knowing that you're in the will of God, you're doing what he wants you to do and that you're bearing good fruit and helping people, that really helped me a lot to know. I mean, everybody else didn't accept me but the people that I was ministering to, they did because their lives were being changed. But I know there's a lot of people watching us today that are lonely and we wanna help them get over that. So, we've talked about getting closer to God, which that is so important. We've talked about learning how to like yourself. That's important. But another thing that people need to do, if you're lonely, don't sit and feel sorry for yourself and wait for somebody else to come and fix it, be vulnerable enough to step out and make some friends or volunteer to do something. You know, maybe people that have retired and they're lonely, they're used to being with a group of people at work and now they're by themselves, well, go volunteer at a hospital two days a week. You know, a lot of times we have problems because we just wait for somebody else to come and fix 'em instead of being aggressive and thinking, "What can I do to make this better"? Because no matter how lonely you are, there's somebody that feels just like you do or even worse and they need you.

Love McPherson: That is so important what you just said because in all relationships, we should go in with the mindset to give, not take. As a matter of fact, statistics show that people who are lonely, they actually repel friends. People feel like, "Oh, you need me". And sometimes, that person feels like, "I'm inadequate. I don't have all that you need". Sometimes, they just feel like, "I just don't have as much to give you as you want". And so, what happens when you go in to give, you reap. The most meaningful relationships that you can connect with are those, you just, you didn't want anything in return. You just went in to be a blessing. And when you be a blessing, you walk out and you're like, "That person blessed me". And so, I just think the volunteering, statistics show it, the cure to loneliness is absolutely empathy, giving back. And the Bible is true: it is more blessed to give than to receive.

Joyce Meyer: Can you imagine how many marriages would be different if a person went into a marriage with this thought in mind, "I wanna live to make you happy. I wanna see how happy I can make you"? Instead of, "Well, you're supposed to make me happy".

Erin Cluley: Absolutely.

Ginger Stache: Yeah, "What's in it for me"?

Erin Cluley: Which becomes co-dependent. And you, "I expect my joy to come from him".

Love McPherson: That's right.

Erin Cluley: "And when he doesn't do it, then I'm..."

Joyce Meyer: And you've heard me say this, God told me, "Stop giving Dave the responsibility for your joy. It's your own responsibility. It's not his job to keep you happy. You have to decide to be happy".

Ginger Stache: And it's so important that we take these practical steps that we're talking about because loneliness, when it festers, in fact, the surgeon general has declared it an epidemic.

Love McPherson: It is.

Ginger Stache: That it's such a dangerous place for people to be long-term that it's worse than smoking packs of cigarettes.

Love McPherson: Twelve a day, twelve cigarettes a day, it's equivalent in your body.

Ginger Stache: Wow.

Erin Cluley: That's crazy.

Ginger Stache: So, it's really dangerous to us, but God has laid out a plan, which is so beautiful, that he not only sent his own son and his Holy Spirit to fill us, one of those things that I've found so helpful as well, during lonely times, is worship. If I turn on worship music, and, because one of the questions I've had is, I know God's with me. I know he is. But sometimes I want arms to wrap around me. You know, we need that physical, as well.

Joyce Meyer: Yeah.

Ginger Stache: We need someone that we can talk to, and will talk back, that we audibly hear. But when I worship, I've really learned that the Holy Spirit is so real and so tangible. And it reminds me that I'm truly never alone, because I enter the presence of God. And just try it. I just would encourage anybody to try that. It's hard to feel sorry for yourself, it's hard to feel lonely, when you're really worshiping God, and much of it is what you were saying, is getting your mind off yourself.

Love McPherson: The core, like I said earlier, is that you're seen, and you're known, and you're accepted. And so, when you are in the presence of God and worship... Now, let me tell you, don't start me, because I'm love. So, you can praise all you want, but I love that worship. It's something about it because, I say, "I'm slow dancing with the Holy Spirit". That's what I'm doing. Literally, the intimacy, rather than just a checklist. I got off the checklist a long time ago. I will not be in a performance-based relationship with God. I'm going to be in a love relationship with him because he's in a love relationship with me. And so, when we are accepted and we're seen, we're known, we're heard, just like the core of loneliness is, and you allow him, and you allow that intimacy, and then receive the love, I'm telling you, it's nothing like it.
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