"Yet a time is coming
and has now come when the true worshipers will worship
the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the
kind of worshipers the Father seeks." - John 4:23

My Heavenly Daddy is healing
me from the inside out.

Transparency is Real.
Many times painful.

Daddy let me be secure in You only!

Monday, September 13, 2010

LONGING TO BELONG


Many of us have suffered at the hand of abuse, of being abandoned, neglected, rejected and isolated to name just a few.

We all have a deep longing to belong. I know what social isolation can feel like. It is not fun. I also know what shame feels like. It is not fun either. The condemnation that shame brings can be paralyzing.

But, God longs for us to belong to Him. For many of us it is hard and frightening because of our fears and past painful experiences. How we even view God may hinder us. He longs to minister to our broken areas. To love us. To nurture us. Personally I am finding out that the more I heal the more I let God in. The more my walls come down in order to trust Him. In order to belong.

For those of you, may this devotional touch the deep part of your soul to bring you some comfort and encouragement:


"Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine." Isaiah 43:1

Abandoned. Neglected. Alone.

Many of us share these painful struggles. Unfortunately, many of us have struggled with them from very early in life. People from dysfunctional families often feel that they were never acceptable to their parents. Many struggle with the feeling that they can never be good enough to receive attention. If reinforced by rejection or abandonment from friends, colleagues, or other significant people in our lives, we can easily conclude that we don't really 'belong' at all.

Humans have a deep longing to belong, to be emotionally bonded with others. Social isolation can be very painful to us. But social isolation may have felt like the only option open to us as children. Attempts at closeness may have meant experiencing control, abuse, rejection or loss. We may have pulled away to protect ourselves, even though it left us lonely and afraid.

God comes to our lonely, anxious hearts and whispers our name. God says "I see both the fear you have of closeness and the deep longing you have to belong. I have come to comfort you and to respond to your need. I have been seeking relationship with you. You belong. You belong to me. You are my child."

It may frighten us - this invitation to belong to God - even though we long for it. It may frighten us because we expect pain and disappointment, over-control and rejection. But gradually, as we continue the healing process, we can allow God to meet this deep need. We can allow ourselves to belong more and more to God.

Help me, God, to allow myself to belong to you.
Thank you for calling me by name.
Thank you for saying 'you are mine'.
I want to belong to you, God.
Help me to heal, Great Physician,
So that I can accept my place in your family.
Take away my fear, Father,
give me the courage to belong to you.
Amen

Copyright Dale and Juanita Ryan

13 comments:

  1. I just did a retreat using Isaiah:43:1. Be not afraid. So many of us are afraid. Belonging is a need we all have I think. Hugs.

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  2. Praying for your continued healing.

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  3. You are so right. For those of us that have been abused it is sometimes very hard to trust God, yet that is what we long for the most. The closeness of a loving Father.

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  4. Yes it is a great to know we belong to God...

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  5. Looking back into my childhood, I see where God has protected me from much worse evil. I gave my life to God when I was 12. I am so glad that I belong to Him. He is my source of strength.

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  6. Oh if not for the grace of God I shudder to think where I would be today. Not having any parents was a difficult journey. Still today in so many ways I long for a mother. It's been the hardest emotion to make sense of for me. I have to believe God's plan will be revealed one day in his time. Hugs to you. Tammy

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  7. hi jbr~ thanks for sharing about this. this post goes along with some of the thoughts i'm having this morning, though i didn't realize my thoughts could be about belonging. i've always related to the ugly duckling story. that feeling of being an outsider, different from others. hoping one day to discover another pack of swans. which i feel i have done in some ways as an adult. that need to belong though does present itself, and those outsider feelings do still pop up, depending on circumstance. i suppose what will be best are when we can feel good about ourselves no matter of the differences we feel from others. to feel our own intrinsic worth. which is what you are finding through your faith. that's wonderful.

    wishing you peace in your heart~~

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  8. I can really relate to wanting to belong. Right now I feel like the only people I belong with are the ones I have met in treatment or in the hospital; I feel like I don't belong among my college peers because I am too old and don't drink/party. It's really difficult. Luckily I feel a sense of belonging in the blogosphere and hope that you can too. It's nice to know that people can relate and that they are on your side.

    Wishing you well,
    NOS

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  9. Just sharing the LOVE ....

    Abbey ♥

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  10. How very very lovely... especially the paragraph you highlighted. The re-affirmation and confirmation was a much needed blessing. Thank you for being an Angel.

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  11. So beautiful, this post.
    Letting God love me has been
    and is the scariest thing I've
    ever done.
    But so healing.
    And sweet.
    And life-giving.
    -Jennifer

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  12. I can't agree with this more. The more I heal, the more I let God in. It's an amazing circle because the more I let Him in, the fast I seem to heal!

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