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Engaging Loneliness & The Needs Of The Heart

In the book “The Needs Of The Heart”, author Chip Dodd addresses our need of relationship. He suggest there are three main areas in which we need to connect: connection with God, connection with self and connection with others.  If these are all three areas that we can experience relationship and connection, they are also areas in which we can experience loneliness. 

Below you can explore how you are doing in each of these areas of connection and prayerfully, garner some next steps to move towards intimacy in each of these relationships. 

The first question is a check in, similar to the “You are here” dot on a map. If you had to describe your starting point what would it be, because sometime where we are at emotionally can vary, the question is worded to help garner our perception of our starting place. 

Relationship with God

What is my current reality in my relationship with God? 

  • My perceived/felt reality:

What scripture comes to mind that intersects with your perceived/felt reality? 

 What do you see are some needs you have in your relationship with God?

After recognizing what is needed, what is a practical step you can take to move towards God? Could you share this step with a friend and ask them to pray for you in taking this step?

Relationship with Self

What is my current reality in my relationship with myself? 

  • My perceived/felt reality:

What scripture comes to mind that intersects with how you are viewing/relating to yourself?

What do you see are some needs you have in your relationship with yourself?

After recognizing what is needed, what is a practical step you can take to move towards connecting with yourself? Could you share this step with a friend and ask them to pray for you in taking this step?

Relationship with Others

What is my current reality in my relationship with Others? 

  • My perceived/felt reality:

What scripture comes to mind that intersects with your perceived/felt reality in connecting with others? 

What do you see are some needs you have in your relationship with others?

After recognizing what is needed, what is a practical step you can take to move towards others? Could you share this step with a friend and ask them to pray for you in taking this step?


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Weekly Reflection:

Week 1:

How would you describe your relationships in the following areas: 

God

Self

Others

 

Week 2:

How have you tried to cope with the areas of loneliness in your life? 

Week 3: 

What are some steps you can take to engage in your relationships?

Week 4:

What would it practically look like for you to flourish in your relationships?


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Questions for the table: 

Opener:  Why do you think most people do not admit their loneliness?

Main ?: Out of the three areas mentioned (God , Self , Others) where do often feel the most lonely?

Closer: What are ways that someone could encourage you in the midst of loneliness?

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Oven roasted tomatoes

I’m simply going to walk you through this recipe because it is so simple that it hurts. First, preheat your oven to 325 degrees. I had two pints of grape tomatoes, Sungolds and heirloom Cherokee purples I got from the Franklin Farmer’s Market and some from Maxwell’s Produce on Nolensville Pike. I rinsed them off under cold water and patted them dry with a kitchen towel but paper towels will work just fine. Then, cut the larger ones in half and leave the smaller ones whole. I like the contrast of some juicy and some dryer. I generously coated them with about a quarter of a cup of evoo, two-teaspoons of kosher salt and a few grinds of fresh black pepper. Place the tomatoes on an ungreased sheet pan  and cook for three and a half hours or until the desired shriveled-ness is reached, you be the judge. Once tomatoes are done, allow them to cool and I stored them in my Weck Jars because I’m pretty much addicted to the aesthetic of their containers. This recipe also works fantastic with grapes and figs, though cooking times can be scaled back to about one hour and a half to two hours. And I want to hear how you used to tomatoes this Summer, so prey-tell?

What to do with them?

I’m guilty of eating a quarter of the tray once they came out of the oven. Some of the ones around the edge of the pan get really dry and crunchy and they have little bits of clumped pepper and salt. Those drive me crazy because their so good and barely make it into another recipe. But I have been using them in pastas which you will see if you follow on Instagram, as well as salads or just as a snack on bread and butter. I’m sure you’ll find your own creative use but I hope this helps! Bon Apetit!

--Recipe provided by Nashville Chef and Owner of The Salted Table: Charles Hunter III