Noelle LeBlanc

Invitation to Belong

December 30, 2016

 

 

“Pick me!”

 

“Ask me!”

 

“Invite me!”

 

“Why not me?”

 

Words I’ve cried over the course of my life when I’ve so desperately wanted something and when I've felt the bite of rejection.  

 

Haven’t we all felt rejection at some point in our lives?    The rejection of not being invited to a party, not being picked for the team, not being asked on a date or being passed over for a job. 

 

Desperately wanting to be involved, to be considered, to be valued.... to be seen. 

 

Rejection stings.

 

It goes against our very design.  

 

We were fashioned with a desire built deep within us for belonging- we want to know and be known.

 

We want to belong.  We need to belong.

 

Why?

 

I believe the answer is simple-  we are all made in the image of God- the reflection of the Trinity. 

 

The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit =  COMMUNITY =  RELATIONSHIP= BELONGING

 

Loneliness and exclusion are NOT part of God’s design

and should have no part in our lives.  

 

Yet, there is it- loneliness and rejection that sits in our hearts like unwelcome guests!  

 

So many (particularly this time of the year), struggle with feeling alone, excluded, unworthy, with no true sense of belonging. 

 

Please hear me when I say, this is NOT part of God’s plan for your life!   Life doesn’t have to be lived this way! 

 

In the book of Mark, we see an example of this brokenness in the life of a woman who was shunned for twelve years because of a medical condition that left her culturally “unclean.”   She spent over a decade desperately trying to find a cure and living in isolation and condemnation.   She lived a hidden life disassociated from the world around her simply because society told her she was unclean, unworthy, unfit, and unwanted.   That she didn’t belong.

 

Twelve years in isolation!  

 

Do you think her heart was broken?    

 

 

Mark 5:25-34 (NIV):

 

And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years.

 

She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse.  When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.

 

At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

 

“You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”

 

But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

 

 

A simple encounter with Jesus changed her whole world!   

 

He not only healed her, he not only took away her shame but he called her “Daughter”- he declared her His child, he gave her a new identity and a sense of belonging!    The exact opposite of what society had been telling her! 

 

Regardless of what the world declares, regardless of how others may treat you…..  God’s love is true, He can heal any wound, He can take away your shame and He can give you a new name!    He can call you his very own and give you a place to belong! 

 

Like this woman, we have to be bold and step towards Jesus to claim our worthiness and to claim our acceptance.     

 

There is no greater sense of belonging then claiming your identity as a child of the most high God!  

 

Don't continue to sit another year with your unwanted guest of rejection and loneliness-  REACH for Christ and claim your invitation to belong to Him!  

 

God can take your rejection and turn it into perfection!

 

 

Father, thank you that you created us for community and placed a desire of belonging with us. Thank you that you welcome us with open arms, that you heal us, forgive us, call us your own and fulfill all our needs.  Rejection has no claim on our lives.  May we be bold and always look to you for our sense of worth and belonging.  

 

But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. 1 John 4:4 (NLT)

 

 

  

 

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