I write regularly about belonging, in part because it’s an area I struggle with in my own life, but also because I’ve yet to meet a person who doesn’t long for it from the center of their being. They may call it friendship or family or home, or they may call the lack of it loneliness or rootlessness or rejection. Whatever we choose to call it, a desire to belong to something and someone is essential to living a full and joy-filled life.
As we approach Easter and we as believers turn our eyes to the cross and the resurrection, I want us to remember that the longing to belong first formed in our spirits. Our deepest need and our greatest longing flows from a spirit created by God to connect with him. Every other need–for family, friends, children, home, vocation, or calling–grows out of this greater desire. Our spirit longs to belong to God, to live in communion with him, to know and be known by the one who crafted each of us with such loving attention and care.
If you find yourself struggling with your own sense of belonging, wondering where in this great, wide world you fit in, may I whisper this reminder in your ear? We weren’t made for this world. Not this broken, beat-up, cracked through its foundation planet.
We were created for more, for better, for the Garden with all of its bounty and perfection and evening walks after the heat of the day. We were made for that world, one where we were literally crafted from the very dirt of the place. How could we not belong when we held the land in our flesh and bones and the breath of God in our lungs?
We lost that world, but we haven’t lost the promise of a new one. Through the sacrifice of Jesus, we can walk through the door of the Kingdom of God again. He is the key that turns the lock on the truest place of belonging our spirit will ever know. The spirit needs to find its home before we can give attention to our body and our soul.
We belong through the sacrifice of Christ. You belong through the sacrifice of Christ. Lonely you. Bored you. Confused you. Rejected you. Fearful you. You belong. There is a place set for you at this table. Come, enter, feast.