Jason and I have just spent the night at a foster parent training session in which we were discussing the effects of a sense of belonging on children. In a house like ours with adopted, foster and birth children, you can bet that we have thought about this topic allot. Most people assume that birth children have an advantage over adopted and foster children when it comes to knowing that they belong. I would agree that there are issues that arise for adopted and foster children that bring questions about belonging to the forefront but I would argue that the question of where do I belong is central to us all.
Part of the developmental process of defining who you are is to ask where you belong. So if we all go through it, where do we find our sense of belonging? This is where my ideas differ from the instructor of our class. I believe we will never really know where we belong until we know that our Heavenly Father created us to belong with Him. Yes, our families are a big part of the equation but they do not contain all the puzzle pieces that help us to define who we are.
I find it ironic that when we buy a new car we head straight to the car's manual to see what type of gas it takes and what oil gives us optimum performance but when people want to know what makes us different as human beings we never think to look to the bible. This is our instruction manual that our manufacturer gave us. Why would you not look to the one who created you?
"Then God said, "Let us make human beings to be like us...so God created human beings in His own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:26a & 27
I think when God created us He implanted a homing device. We truly belong when we are reunited with the One who created us, Yahweh God. The problem is that so many people do not know how to be reunited with God or that is why they feel like they don't belong. They spend their whole life looking to fill that hole.
Our search is a reflection of our need to belong, to be accepted, to be loved, to have an identity, a relationship. I believe we are forever restless if we do not have this sense of belonging. And we will never find fulfillment, in expressing ourselves, until we find it in committing ourselves totally to God. You and I are searching for someone to love us but that someone is God. That is the most primitive and basic hunger of our life. No other need can ever be met until this need is met.
When we say, "I belong to the Father, I am one of his family. I'm a child of God. I know him as my heavenly Father. I have been accepted by him. He loves me." then we have a basis upon which all the other relationships of life can all be worked out. This is where the deep and acute cry of the our human heart is met. Jesus Christ meets us in this place. It is where we belong.