Belonging

by Claire Vorster on May 14, 2013

“The best mirror is an old friend.” George Herbert

Where do you belong? Who do you belong too? Do you know what it’s like to have a room of people pleased to see you or is your nose invariably pressed up against the mirror of someone else’s happiness?

Belonging at it’s best brings comfort, friendship, loyalty and trust. At it’s worse it morphs into the Nazi party, the Whites-only Country Club or the place where everyone else seems wanted but you.

Why create places where certain people are not welcome? Why divide into Us and Them at all? Are we actually safer in little places where everyone looks alike, or is this One-Size-Fits-All approach just easier, less scary, less trouble all round?

If you have ever been excluded, you will know how important it is to belong. Belonging is comfort, friendship, loyalty and trust. But when belonging turns sour, it ceases to be belonging at all. A place where certain people are not wanted is not belonging, it’s fitting in.

Saying the right thing, thinking alike, keeping up appearances, being one of us, laughing at the right jokes, hating what I hate and loving what I love.

If we are forced to become a mirror image of someone or something else, we give nothing real and gain nothing of substance. This is just phantom love, love-lite, as flimsy as a spider’s web and just as hard to struggle free from.

Why settle for this?

“Fitting in is about assessing a situation and becoming what you need to be accepted. Belonging, on the other hand, doesn’t require us to change who we are; it requires us to be who we are”  Brené Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection

The best mirror is an old friend. Someone who knows what love is, and what it is not. Who has no desire for you to lose yourself, but rather to find yourself. Who is interested in you, not in using you. Who loves without question, without limit and with purpose.

Someone who knows what you are capable of, and loves you anyway.

A friend like this does not demand what you cannot give, does not love you only when certain requirements are met. This kind of friend will never exchange grace for manipulation and control.

And if ever a friend knew what it was like to be out on a limb, cast off and rejected…

But you are so important to Him that He became nothing and gave everything, because He sees all that is good in you and He calls you His own.

“That love which was weary, hungry, tempted, scorned, scourged, buffeted, spat upon, crucified, pierced – which fasted, prayed, taught, healed, wept, sweated, bled, died. That love will eternally embrace you.” Richard Baxter

You belong to Him. And His love will always reminds us what love really is, and what it is not.

He believes in you.

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