Do you know in your heart and your belly that you’re never alone? Or are you so lonely because there’s nothing in your life that you can grab hold of and pull it close? Lady Antebellum is an American country music group that performed a song entitled Never Alone written by Jim Brickman. The words are lovely and meaningful. It speaks to angels protecting you and trouble bypassing you and most important that you’re welcomed into heaven when it’s your time to go. All good wishes for never being alone.
There are many interpretations of this song. Some relate it to the death of a loved one. Others relate to it as a love song about how one person feels about another. Take from it as you will the message is still; we are never alone if we know that we’re loved.
Here comes my big however. I am a crazed 60s music fan. It’s all I listen to as I’m not into a lot of the music (maybe it’s music) that I hear today. The song I love a lot more than the song Never Alone is You’ll Never Walk Alone which is a show tune from the 1945 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel. * The song has never been listed as a religious song but it definitely has some religious overtones. Several artists recorded it back in the 60s as well as today. But the 60s are my favorite and I’ve enjoyed listening to Gerry & The Pacemakers-1965, Elvis Presley-1967, Patti LaBelle and the Bluebells-1964, The Righteous Brothers who sang it on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1965, and The Lettermen-1965. And, because I love his voice, I’ll give a nod to Josh Groban-2015.
I bring this song up because it reminds me that I’ll never walk alone as long as I have God in my life. God always has my back—always. His love for me is unconditional. He sees me as I am with all my many flaws and He loves me anyway. For me God is my eternal Valentine. Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and he is always my Valentine. But God’s love is paramount in the love department and He will never allow me to walk alone.
People have a foundational need to know they’re never alone. For Christians, it’s the fact that we know God is with us every step of the way. Given that, how do we tell ourselves that God is always with us? How, in fact, do we teach our kids and grandkids that they’re never alone? How, also does one tell it to their spouse? Knowing the answers to these questions gives us complete and total security. It’s all around us.
Sadly, loneliness is an epidemic in our society. Why is that? I mean look at how connected we are through technology. More now than ever before. So why the loneliness? It’s that word…technology. The word in itself has nothing to do with reality. It has nothing to do with human contact. Is it beneficial? Certainly it is. I love to check in on my lifelong friends who live in other parts of the country and see how they’re doing. I love looking at photos of my old high school friends and their families. I love sharing my own. It’s all so good. Some put forward a false presentation of their lives. They don’t want to admit their life is in shambles. And they certainly don’t want to admit they’re lonely. In our scripture, we see that Paul is writing to Timothy about not being alone. Paul is in prison and Timothy is in Ephesus where times are tough. Kinda like how things are now in our world.
Paul explains to Timothy that he knows all about Paul’s teachings. He knows Paul’s way of life, his purpose, faith, patience, love, endurance, persecutions, and sufferings. He tells Timothy that he knows these things from the scriptures. Because he knows these things and he knows the persecution Paul went through in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra and the fact that the Lord rescued him from all of them, Timothy should continue in what he’s learned. He must be convinced of it. Through faith in Christ Jesus Paul tells Timothy it will make him wise. He reminds him that he’s not alone.
How do we get to the point that we know we’re not alone? Well, we build that firm foundation of knowledge through education. Therefore, Paul tells Timothy to educate the young. He wants Timothy to tell the story of salvation. The story of creation. Timothy must realize that God don’t make junk.
Paul talks of rebellion and sin. Have you ever noticed that during times of trouble we sometimes separate ourselves from God choosing our own way? Have you noticed that God won’t leave you alone when you do that? God gave us Jesus to remind us of His promise that we are not alone. He raises us up so we might have salvation right now. Living in abundant joy. This education builds a foundation for us.
Inspiration is next. Paul tells Timothy in verses 16-17: All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. He means that the people who wrote scripture were inspired by God to write these things down so that we might all be inspired. So that we all might learn. He wants us to be inspired through the written word and inspired as we read God’s Word. But sometimes we read a passage of scripture and say, “What? I don’t get it.” I know I say that more than I want to admit. But I keep reading. You never know when God’s inspiration will hit you.
Scripture inspires our hearts and teaches us that we are not alone. Nothing can separate us from God through Christ Jesus. Scripture inspires us to pray together.
In verse 17 specifically, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. Paul is talking about perspiration—rolling up our sleeves to take this message to the world. How can others know about the love of God if we don’t tell them? If we don’t show them? If we don’t love them enough to put forth the effort? When we love someone, we’re willing to do the work. We’re willing to perspire. We talk to our kids, right? We show our kids how to do things, right? All because we love them. We’re there for them. We want them to feel they are never alone.
Where or who do you turn in times of trouble? If you, as a believer are a servant of God, how do you think that goes over to a non-believer if you don’t tell them about Christ? Are you willing to show them that they are not alone? Like Paul, we can share our own experiences with others. Do we have the courage to stand fast against hard times? Are we equipped to use that courage to defend the truth of the gospel message? These are the questions we must ask ourselves.
And that’s what I learned in Church……see ya next time!
Here’s wishing you all a very Happy Valentine’s Day!
As a side note because I love stories. Here’s the backstory to the song “You’ll Never Walk Alone” indicated by the asterisk beside the 1945 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel. *
*In the second act of the musical, Nettie Fowler, the cousin of the protagonist Julie Jordan, sings “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” She aims to comfort and encourage Julie. You see, Billy Bigelow, Julie’s husband, the male lead dies. He accidentally falls on his knife while trying to run away after attempting a robbery with his mate Jigger. Billy dies in Julie’s arms. The song is brought back in the final scene to encourage a graduation class of which Louise (Billy and Julie’s daughter) is a member. Billy, who is now invisible, has been granted the chance to return to Earth for one day to redeem himself. He watches the ceremony and is allowed to silently motivate Louise and Julie to join in with the song.
I love it!