Field Notes From A Prayer Warrior

-Went to church today. It was like Noah’s ark…the animals come in two by two. Except for me.

–journal entry, 2016

-Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall, all the king’s horses and all the king’s men, couldn’t put Humpty together again.

–British nursery rhyme, 1882

-Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart, and free me from my anguish.

–Psalm 25:16-17


In the leadup, the process, and the aftermath, two prevalent emotions are anger and loneliness. Anger, for me, is ever so much easier to bear than loneliness. Anger makes me feel strong, upright, justified, in control (even when I’m not); loneliness renders me sad, powerless, low, “less than.” Anger is action (do I care if it’s questionable action?!); loneliness is slug-like, sloth-like inaction, lying in a lifeless lump.

I had never dealt with loneliness much in my life, as a rule, and when I did, it was of mercifully short duration. That all changed in the wake of our separation. All too soon I found myself standing in a tiny one-bedroom apartment with hardly a stick of furniture, the carpet and walls a lovely shade of “Builder’s Beige,” one of the most depressing colors on earth.

Into this joy-sucking crucible came the nightly “laundry list of longing”…

I missed a companion curled up next to me on the couch, and in the bed at night. Laughter and music in the kitchen as we cooked. Our large home with the 80-acre view of farm fields and pasture (traded for a parking lot with poorly-concealed dumpsters). Our cat Franky. All the little rituals of a 25-year marriage…the evening stroll, dinner at our favorite drive-in, barbeques with neighbors…


I shook my head, waved my hands around, wiping the thoughts and images away. My vision returned…to all the reasons I’d had to leave. Nostalgia had obscured a painful truth…

I had been lonely for a loooong time.

You can be lonely in a room full of people…or in a home…where you can not fully be yourself.

This loneliness I was experiencing wasn’t new…just different…and…healthier…because it was ME that was feeling it!

With that, a small, crumpled-up warrior inside me got to her feet and stated defiantly…

“I would rather live alone with God, than live lonely in a lie.”

Loneliness can be action, too!

Then I had to battle a bigger lie…fear.

“Will I ever be happy, have love again? Or am I forever scarred? Wounded to incapacity? Would I, could I, ever be restored to ‘whole’?”

Or was I a hopeless, human Humpty Dumpty?

I turned that litany of fear into a PRAYER…

And the Lord bent down and started picking up pieces…gently, painstakingly reassembling and sealing them together with His love. He’d been there before, as I laid my broken self down in front of Him, asking Him to forgive me and save me. He could do it again.

He believes I’m worth it.

He believes you’re worth it.

When life has shattered you, call on your King. He is there, always. You need not ever be lonely.

You are never alone…with Him.



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