The Cure for Loneliness
by Bill Herried
Published on January 14, 2023
Categories: Devotions

The Cure for Loneliness

Loneliness literally ravages our brains and our bodies.

 When I was in the third grade, my favorite superhero was (and still is!) Superman—the “strange visitor from another planet…” If there was a job that no one else could do, Superman got it done—solo. He didn’t need an army; he didn’t need back up; he just got it done by himself—even if the bad guys had Kryptonite!

Throughout my life, the idea of “getting it done alone” has often been the path of least resistance; especially if it means “troubling” someone for help.  But the truth is we not only do our best work with others, but we hunger for—and thrive in—community.

The first time I experienced this personally, was when I was going to the University of Washington in Seattle and my girlfriend Erin (now my wife!) was going to school in LA. During those long months of separation, I tried focusing on my studies in Seattle, but while we were separated, I couldn’t think of anything but her!

Then after we were married, we joined a group of young adults where we worshiped to mentor the youth in our church. It was a group that planned, prayed and hung out together. It was an incredible time. I didn’t understand why we were drawn to and enjoyed these people so much, but here is what I discovered since: I was created for community.

When I say “community,” I don’t mean simply having access to a lot of people. I define community as experiencing a significant life-connection with others. I spent my summers in NYC during my high school years, and it was during those summers that I experienced how it is possible to be lonely—even in a city of nearly 8 million people.

Most of us have experienced loneliness (in one way or another) in our lives. But did you know that there is clinical data that demonstrates the destructive power of loneliness? Professor John Cacioppo, of the University of Chicago, has spent his life studying social neuroscience, and has demonstrated over and over the effects of loneliness on our bodies and brains. The outcome: loneliness—in other words, living lives without significant connection to others—is lethalIt literally ravages our brains and our bodies.

Why do we thrive in community? Scripture gives us some powerful insights.

God himself lives in community.

In the earliest lines of Genesis, the first book in the Bible, God said,

“Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us…” So, God created human beings in his own image (Genesis 1:26, 27, emphasis mine).

What is only hinted at here in Genesis, Jesus made clear later: God, who is One, exists in Community.  Jesus taught that God exists in three personsFather, Son and Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).[2] God lives in community: a community of unity, interdependence, love and cooperation. Father, Son and Holy Spirit cooperate to accomplish God’s purposes in our world and our universe. Which means this: the reason we hunger for community (significant life-connection with others) is evidence of God’s image in us.

Jesus’s idea of community

Then, Jesus demonstrated the power of community by calling 12 men to do life together: his twelve disciples. When you read through the gospels, you discover that Jesus was a real-life Superman. He could have done it all—on his own! So then, why did he call the twelve to be with him (Mark 3:14)? I believe it was because Jesus himself knew that we are created for community. And not only are we created for community; we thrive in community!

At CenterPoint, we express this kind of connectedness in our Growth Groups: groups of people who live in community, doing life together. In these groups, we interact around God’s word, pray for (and with) each other, and serve our greater community as a group. And when we do this, we experience what we were created for: living out God’s purposes in our lives. Together.


Bill Herried is lead pastor at CenterPoint Christian Fellowship in Tacoma, Washington. He has an undergraduate degree from the University of Washington in Seattle, and Master of Divinity from Corban University in Salem, Oregon. He is married to the most extraordinary woman on the planet. Together they have 3 adult children and 4 grandchildren and loves a good biryani. You can learn more about Bill on his blog, Your Daily Encouragement

1 Comment

  1. Victoria Gann (Vicki)

    Great article full of truth.
    But superman is a fictional character and Jesus is real, and is part of God’s eternal reinging Kingdom, which is, our Heavenly Father, His Son, and Holy Spirit that makes us into their image, they all live in us, and will for eternity!

    We will never recive who they are in us by attending human manufactured relfion full of human made traditons.



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