Whilst living alone here in Japan the past month or so I’ve been fortunate as I’ve had a lot of time to contemplate topics like loneliness.
Not that I’m mired in self-pity for the circumstances of my situation. Yet I do keenly miss the company of my friends and family.
So it’s interesting that the book I’m currently reading is called “Life Together” by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
In only a few pages I’m immediately impressed by his perceptive insights.
I think we find it all too easy to see our Christian lives as insulated existences. Private. Personal.
But Bonhoeffer reminds us that Jesus himself “lived in the midst of his enemies” and was ultimately “deserted” by those closest to him.
As Psalm 22 foretold, “on the cross he was utterly alone, surrounded by evildoers and mockers.”
In the same way, “the Kingdom is to be in the midst of [our] enemies. And he who will not suffer this does not want to be of the Kingdom of Christ; he wants to be among friends, to sit among roses and lilies, not with the bad people but the devout people.”
This theme of life together is one I look forward to examining more deeply in the coming days and weeks.