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Community Living with Emma Nicholls

Emma Nicholls    May 1, 2024    2 min read   

Lonely? You’re not alone.

I’ve really been enjoying watching the second season of Alone Australia, a reality TV show on SBS in which contestants – who are trained survivalists – are dropped into the wilderness and compete to survive the greatest number of days alone, self-documenting their journey on camera.

Watching on, it becomes clear that the challenge is not only physical, it’s more often the mental battle which brings contestants to their knees. 

But those who accept their vulnerability and find peace with the wilderness find a way through. They demonstrate a resilience that is simply inspiring to watch. 

Life is like a wilderness sometimes. At different times we can feel isolated or as if we don’t belong, even when surrounded by friends and family. 

Loneliness can arise from a big life change, the death of a loved one, or simply moving to a new town where you don’t know anyone. 

These feelings aren’t something to be ashamed of – they are to be felt and listened to. 

They are trying to tell us that we need to connect more meaningfully with others, to find a community where we know that we belong and matter. 

Photo by Atharva Tulsi, Unsplash

Maybe you find connection through sport, art or music clubs, your pub trivia team or other interest groups. 

Serving others in need by volunteering is another great way to connect with others through a common cause. For me, the church has become a place where I have found deeply meaningful connection and care. 

I’ve met many people who really live out the example Jesus gave to extend welcome and generosity to all. I’ve experienced the church as a spiritual family in which no one is a stranger (see Ephesians 2:19 in the Bible). 

There’s truth in the saying, ‘No person is an island.’ We all need to connect, matter and belong. 

Like the contestants on Alone, none of us can live in isolation forever. 

Rev Emma Nicholls is the minister at Community Life Uniting Church located at 528 Waterford Road, Ellen Grove. Emma aspires to enrich a sense of hope and belonging in the Forest Lake community through the church and its ministry.

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Emma Nicholls