One of the wonderful side effects of knowing that I am completely accepted by the Lord, is that now I also know that I belong. I have been adopted into His family and I have a wonderful Heavenly Father. This gives me royal status, I am now a child of the King. Paul writes in Romans 8:15,16. ‘For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out “Abba! Father!” The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God. ’NASB.
I belong in God’s family, and the wonderful thing about being adopted is that the adopter knew what they were getting and they chose to go ahead with the adoption. Part of being totally accepted by God is the knowledge that He wanted me in His family, even before He had begun to work on my transformation.
Just as we can expend much energy in life looking for acceptance, so we can also wander through life feeling that we don’t quite belong, and a similar search goes on as I look for somewhere to belong, somewhere I can ‘put my feet up’. When we become Christians it’s like finding ‘home’ for my soul. God wants us to be that sure and that comfortable in His love and acceptance that we can begin to relax in who He has made us to be, even if we feel that we don’t quite fit the mould that the world around us would put on us.
This is just so important, because if I can believe that I am accepted and that I belong in God’s family, not because I snuck in the back door when He wasn’t looking, but because He chose to adopt me into His family, I can accept myself at a much deeper level. I no longer need to try to be like someone else who I admire, or to try and be the person that I think others want me to be. I didn’t even need to be the sort of person I imagined God would want me to be before He accepted me,
It also means that I can stop comparing myself – such a big problem in our social media generation – in terms of looks, achievement, income, occupation, friendships etc. etc. I once heard a wise comment about the fact that it is a waste of time wanting to be like someone else because that position is already taken! A little glib perhaps, but it is the negative side of another comment I heard about having a good amount of self esteem. A good sense of self esteem was simply defined as ‘the joy of being me’.
God has chosen to have me in His family. I am accepted and I belong to Him. So today let us give ourselves in thanksgiving that we belong to a wonderful heavenly Father. Let that release a deep sense of belonging into the depths of your heart, with a sense of your preciousness and your value to Him.
There’s an expression we use sometimes, “I’m going to make the most of this”. It has slight overtones of ‘making the best of a bad job’, but someone I know took that phrase ‘make the most’ as a motto and found that it transformed the way she saw life- for the better- in a very tangible way.
The fact is there is only one of me and one of you! That ‘you’ is totally unique in every aspect of your life, and no one else has the opportunities, the relationships, the qualities, the life experience that you have. If you and I can believe that and embrace who we are because we have been embraced by, and belong to, the great and Mighty King of all the earth, we will ‘make the most’ of everything He has given us.
When we do that everything becomes more meaningful and rich. And this journey into meaningful belonging will all start with thanking Him for the incredible privilege of belonging to Him, having been adopted into His family because of Jesus death in my place and His resurrection that gives me a new life.