Daily Devotions

Am I Enough for Me?

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To get wisdom is to love oneself; to keep understanding is to prosper. (Proverbs 19:8)

I’ve had a number of friends through the years who couldn’t stand being alone. Even a moment by one’s self is uncomfortable. This is different from loneliness. You can be lonely in a room full of people. Loneliness is the feeling no one knows about you or cares for you. Being uncomfortable alone is different.

The idea of hating it when you are alone has to do with insecurity and perhaps even a little self-loathing. The person who does not feel comfortable alone uses others as a diversion from the pain within. This Advent season, it may be time to address this issue with yourself or someone you know.

The first step in feeling comfortable with yourself, is facing your guilt. Self-loathing is painful and destructive to one’s being. Often, this has occurred because someone has done something to you that makes you feel unworthy, or you have acted in a way that leaves you humiliated. Naming your pain is the first step in the healing process. Offering your pain to God, through prayer, is a truly cathartic activity.

These steps are often not enough. When you’ve faced your fear of being alone, and it hasn’t made a real difference, spending time working through this with a therapist can make a lasting difference. When you begin to feel comfortable with yourself, others begin to feel more comfortable with you as well. The more you spend time alone, relaxed and comfortable, the more you will be comfortable in other situations as well.

Today, schedule some time in the next week to spend at least three hours by yourself. This isn’t easy, depending on the stage of life you are in, but try your best. Evaluate your level of comfort. If it isn’t a pleasant experience, ask yourself why you aren’t comfortable with yourself. As you come to this self-realization, you just might feel better than you’ve felt in many years. God made you in the Divine image and wants you to appreciate yourself enough to live well in your own skin.

Singularity's Spark

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For every house is built by someone, but the builder of all things is God. (Heb. 3:4)

Zat Rana describes a powerful reality of the beginning of the universe: Once upon a time, some 13.799 billion years ago, a state which we call the singularity sparked the void. It’s a state in which the laws of physics as we know them don’t work; a state that supposedly birthed the Universe. With it, we got space and time, energy and matter, all dancing and kissing as everything began to expand. Every atom, every star, every galaxy, every planet shot out of that one, lonely point of infinity.

These creations of ordinary matter, which include the speck of dust we call Earth, however, only make up 0.3 percent of the Universe. Around 68 percent of it is occupied by dark energy, an unknown entity responsible for the expansion of space. A further 27 percent is made up of dark matter, another mostly unknown entity. The remaining 5 percent is what we know and study, including that humble 0.3 percent of the total.

Even then, within this tiny fraction, the Milky Way has to contend with some 200 billion galaxies, the Sun with a septillion stars (a one with 24 zeroes), and our miniature home with somewhere in the range of another septillion planets. In the broader cosmological drama, not only is Earth not the main actor, but the idea that it has any meaningful role to play at all is absorbed and then dwarfed by sheer quantification.

Rana’s description is purely rational, based on the observable, and scientific theory. For one moment, contemplate what this means spiritually. Imagine the God who created all this from a single action. The power of this God is beyond any scientific description, no matter how brilliantly theorized. This same Almighty God also knew you before you were in the womb. This God called you by name at the baptismal font. This God watched over you, and patiently waited to hear your prayers, and sat with you in worship. Today, humbly ponder this awe-inspiring reality. Praise God the Almighty, the Alpha and the Omega!

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