Have you ever wanted to simply belong? Belong in a group? Belong to a specific family? Have you had that longing to simply feel like you were a part of something special? Is there that longing or a nagging that won’t go away?
I see it everyday in my classroom. I have little girls and boys that want to be friends with other girls and boys, they want to “belong” to a special group of kids BUT they feel as though they are left out. These little ones will do everything possible to belong but I always find myself having to talk with them about the type of friend they want and do they want a friend that treats them good only when they feel like it or do they want a friend who wants to be around them all the time and like them for who they are.
Well, it not only happens to little ones but it happens to adults too. We want to feel as though we belong. Tonight, as I write and open up to you, I find myself wanting to belong. I want to feel as I belong in a place where I have always felt I belonged, I have a longing and desire which is hard to put into words but I know that many of my readers will understand.
My entire life, or from the time I was about 5 years old, I had a certain routine every Sunday morning. There was a certain path I took once a week and many times up to three times a week. I am sure by the time I was grown I could take this path blindfolded. Not only did I have a path but I had a special schedule I followed each of these Sunday’s for over 30 years of my life! I had a specific place to sit, stand and even a job(s) I did for the most part. I belonged! I am sure you probably know where I belonged, don’t you??? I belonged to a church family. I knew without a doubt when I woke up on Sunday mornings I would be attending a specific church where I would see specific brothers and sisters in Christ. I, also knew when I missed church there was a piece of the church missing. I was part of a family bigger than me.
Two years ago I lost this feeling of belonging. When we left Cedar Creek Church, I for the first time in my life did not have a church home. I embraced the opportunity to seek God, listen to where He wanted me and actually take a back seat and enjoy simply being a “seat warmer” for a while. I took this as my season to be fed and not to help feed others. Well, here I am two years later and on my second church since Cedar Creek, finding myself wanting to belong! Since leaving the place I called home for so many years, I have not found another place to call home and here I am now desiring that place to belong.
Tonight when Robert and I were running an errand around town, we had a conversation about things we needed to do tomorrow. I had for the past month felt like I didn’t belong where we are currently attending but did not know how to address it to my husband…. Well tonight, I couldn’t hold it in any longer… I blurted it out, “I am ready to find a church where I feel like I belong!” I think I totally surprised him by my words. My own husband didn’t expect to hear me say, “I want to belong”. So if he was surprised I wonder how surprised God is by me longing to belong?
Here I am at almost 40 years old, taking the advise I give my students on a daily basis. I am asking the same questions I ask those third graders but instead of the word “friend” I am using the word “church” because I am ready to feel like I BELONG!