Rediscovering Community When We Find Ourselves Feeling Lonely


We have all known the long loneliness, and we have found that the answer is community.

Dorothy Day

When I started blogging nearly eight years ago, I didn’t know what I was getting into.  My friend, Frank Chiapperino, encouraged me to sign-up for my first blog and start writing.  And so, I did.  I wrote about my family.  I wrote about small group ministry.  And I wrote about things that stretched me.

As I continued the writing journey, I started connecting with people.  I met several people who started leaving comments on my blog, and I met other people as I ventured into the blog world to discover other writers and commenters from across the country and around the world.  Despite the lack of face time with these fellow members of the blog world, I could feel a sense of community developing.  We began encouraging each other and connecting on other platforms.  We started exchanging guest posts.  And we directed friends and followers to others in the online community.

I remember the sense of connection I felt with people from all over the world.  People like Larry Carter, Chad Jones, Joshua Rivers, Bill Grandi, and many, many others became friends.  I even remember feeling a sense of connection with more prominent bloggers like Michael Hyatt, Chris LoCurto, Jeff Goins, and Jon Acuff.

This continued for a while until it seemed like the community I was experienced was steamrolled by a massive drive to grow traffic, email lists, and followers.  I’ll admit I am guilty of this, and I’m sure many of my fellow blogging friends were too.  A few prominent bloggers like Michael Hyatt stopped accepting comments on their blogs.  Countless business and blogging coaches began advertising with more focus tips and tricks for growing email lists and income.  The blog world became less and less personal as it morphed into a business.  In addition to this, the blogging and podcasting world continued to fill up with more and more creators.  I kept subscribing to more blogs and more podcasts, and I slowly began to disconnect from the community I had come to love.

Am I connecting with any of you?

Monday night, I decided to try something a little different.  I decided to give Google Hangouts a try.  I went down my contact list and connected with a friend from Arizona, Chad Jones.  After a few minutes of passing text messages back and forth, we connected by video.  We had shared emails and comments before things became too busy for both of us, but this was the first time we connected face-to-face (through the computer).  We talked for several minutes about writing, about our families, and about our jobs.  We shared prayer requests before we signed off.  There was something restoring about this conversation.

After our video call ended, we continued the conversation on Twitter.  Here’s how it went:

  Very cool catching up with on

  Right back at you It was a blast hanging with you

  Reminded me of why I got into blogging back in the day: the community. I think that’s part of what’s been missing.

I think you are on to something. You and I can make a difference by making community happen.


Over the past few months, I have felt the loneliness that Dorothy Day talks about in the opening quote when it comes to the blogging community.  I know I could point fingers at those around me who seem to be falling off the map.  But I think a lot of the responsibility to experience this community rests on me.  I’m the one responsible for pursuing community.  I believe I was made to be in community, and you were too!

Pursuing and experiencing community requires commitment and intentional actions.  It means carving out time for others.  It means turning off the noise and pruning down the list of people we follow, so we can find meaningful connection.  The internet gives us the opportunity to connect with a global community.  This is a good thing, but let’s not forget to pursue depth in our relationships.

This is how we will conquer the loneliness that sometimes creeps into our lives.

Are you feeling lonely?  What’s missing from your life?  How are you experiencing meaningful connection and community in your life?  Tell me about it in the comments.