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Loneliest…

“I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been, tonight…” If you’ve ever heard anything like this, especially from someone you care for, it should give you cause for concern. Imagine for a moment that a friend sent you that text late at night. Would you text them back? Call them? Would you hop in the truck and drive to them? Would you avoid responding? Regardless, you’ve been sent a message. …And that message is, “I need valuable relationships, and I don’t have them.”

As we sprint headlong into the digital realm, and I do mean “realm,” we find ourselves becoming more displaced from what is true of any given thing. I’ve warned of things like this in previous blogs. THIS IS A GREAT EXAMPLE… We’re growing, as a culture, as a nation, as a world, into a dependency upon electronics. We’re not talking about the benefit of electricity here. No. We’re talking about the need to find comfort and avoid self-loathing through social media, video games, and virtual reality. Notice the subtle order I placed those three things? Social media is real, but there is a genuine degree of separation from being face-to-face. Video games aren’t “real” in that you actually do in life what you appear to be on screen, but your mind begins to believe it is. As for virtual reality, the words themselves tell you what you need to know. This is as close as we come, yet, to reality.

We’ve got a genuine existential threat to our way of life staring us in the face and nobody is paying attention. Our children are growing up without God. They’re dependent on the positive responses they get from social media, and when they’re denied, they are sad and lonely. They turn to video games and alternative worlds for validation. I think about how Satan is enjoying every second of the fallout from Covid-19 and our continual retreat in the digital world, and it keeps me up at night.

INCUBUS – LONELIEST

My computer hard drive bit it recently. I spent a pretty penny to have solid-state hard drives put in my new desktop, and was assured they never go bad. I’m the lucky guy that actually had his go bad, when millions of others are bulletproof. They are replaced and I’m up a running. But, I had to rebuild my extensive music collection from iTunes and the rest from scratch. The last time I looked I had nearly 80days worth of music. A great portion of this I’ve never listened to, but may someday. In the process of rebuilding all of this, I chose an all-new media player to organize this. I still have iTunes, but my dislike of Apple is only equaled by my dislike of Google and all the others. So I decided to go with MediaMonkey. I’d heard really good things over the years and they don’t play games and screw around with file types the way that Apple does, so that was right up my alley.

In setting up my new library, which would take hours over the course of several weeks in the evenings, I ran across a slow head-nodding ditty by Incubus from their “8” album that I hadn’t remembered hearing prior.

Incubus – Loneliest

Initially, I was drawn to the ebb and flow of the music itself. But I’ll admit, that I love to sing too. I absolutely love it. Unfortunately, I’m not very good at singing. I don’t have much of a range, and I never seem to breathe in the right places to carry through whole notes and such. When I listened to this, unlike many of the Incubus tunes, the range was concise and I could sing it. At this point, I switched from “shuffle” to “repeat” and let it roll through a couple of times. The lyrics started to really sink in at that point.

I found myself thoroughly enjoying the song and also feeling terrible for the people it described. Anyone who finds themselves relating personally to a song such as this is having a rough patch and they need human interaction. They need the Lord. Here are the lyrics:

I have forgotten what it feels like
I don’t remember it’s true
It will take all I have left to make this right
But I’d like to try it with you

I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been, that’s right
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight

I have forgotten what it tastes like
I don’t remember, do you?|
Oh, it’ll take all I have left to work this out
Oh, push on ’til I’m breaking through

Oh, I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight
I’m inspired by your proposition, but I don’t trust my intuition
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight

Yours is the curtain that I’d like to pull back
But I can’t be certain that you’re really real
Yours is the curtain that I’d like to pull back
But I can’t be certain that you’re really real
Real…

Are you really, really real?

I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been tonight
I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been, that’s right
I’m inspired by your proposition but I don’t trust my intuition
So I guess I’m going digital tonight

Incubus – Loneliest (lyrics)

I can picture a person either on their phone, through an app, in front of a laptop, through a video game, or whatever forming some sort of connection with another through the digital world. They seem drawn to one another, or at least we gather that from the one view. There’s a solemn and distinct statement about being “the loneliest” ever. There’s also a hesitancy present as if they’re potentially going to be hurt, bamboozled, or have a poor outcome. Whether this is sex, which we don’t talk about properly, a platonic relationship, making a friend, forming any kind of relationship, or whatever, the idea that the digital realm is either the last refuge for us or the preferred method is equally horrifying. The sense of “taste” is mentioned. Can we taste digitally?

There’s plenty I can say about sex outside the commitment of marriage, but I’ve written another blog on that for future publishing. Many of you won’t like it. And I’m OK with that. If we remove sex from the equation for this discussion, we’re left with relationships, both temporal and eternally significant, at play here. This song is literally crying out for a connection with another person. That isn’t really up for debate. And Who guides us on what healthy connections are and aren’t? Where are those dictates written? How are those guidelines observed and demonstrated in our world? Believers know the answer to those, somewhat, and fewer are adhering to them.

Why is it we have a 50% increase in suicide attempts in this country post-Covid? We’re losing our connections. We no longer understand what healthy connections are and how to form them. We don’t grasp a biblical worldview and follow it. …And when we don’t understand, rightly, what a biblical worldview is, we’re lost, my friends. Great song, gutwrenching implications, and the need for a serious understanding of the perils of the digital realm. Sound like a story anywhere in the greatest of books? I can think of several.

Read the Bible my friends. Understand it. Follow it. Be salt and light my friends.

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