Norwegian adventure junkie Kristoffer Glestad spent six months living completely alone off the land next to an isolated mosquito infested lake in Canada’s Northwest Territories. He built himself a primitive cabin, hunted and fished to survive and saw no one.
There was a two week span where he never said one word out loud. But after half a year, he could take it no longer. Asked what he learned on this adventure his response was simple, “People are not meant to be alone.”
It's not good to be alone
When God made us he said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.”
It’s painful for us to be alone. Loneliness voraciously gnaws at the way we view ourselves and the world we live in. But we need more than other people around us. God made us in such a way that we also need him.
When it seems God is not near us, not caring for us, not involved with us, our lives feel pointless. Everything loses its worth. Suffering has no purpose. Life has no meaning.
We are not alone
The most profound way we have to give someone comfort in their distress is to spend time with them, to visit them, to sit down beside them, to be there for them.
This is what God has done for us. He became one of us. Jesus will always be one of us. That’s why he took the name Immanuel, God with us. That’s why his death on the cross could substitute for the eternal death we deserve. That’s why his victory over death on Easter also belongs to us. He is one of us.
Jesus is Immanuel
That’s also why we can be sure that Immanuel can relate to us when life, like some hideous monster, threatens to devour us. Immanuel understands our loneliness, our pain, our fear. He’s experienced it. He’s conquered it ... for us.
It took Kristoffer Glestad six months in Canada’s wilderness in complete isolation to say, “People are not meant to be alone.” We look at Jesus’ cradle and cross and say, “We will never be alone. Jesus is our Immanuel.”